BMW unveils 3 Series GT ahead of Geneva Show

BMW has unveiled its new 3 Series Gran Turismo ahead of the official reveal at the Geneva Motor Show next month. The GT is a stylish hatch version of the 3 Series and will sit between the saloon and Touring models in the range. It goes on sale in the UK in June.

It’s likely to appeal to buyers who need more practicality than a standard four-door 3 Series offers and will be a strong alternative to the Audi A5 Sportback. It’s an interesting design and while not as svelte as the standard 3 Series it’s certainly better looking than the larger 5 Series GT.

As well as a longer and taller body, the 3 Series GT also has a longer wheelbase than the standard car which means better interior space, particularly for rear seat passenges who, plus a bigger boot. The fact it’s a hatchback will mean a big boost for practicality so although the 520-litre boot is only 25 litres bigger than the saloon, the load space will be easier to access. All models will come with an electrically opening tailgate and 40/20/40 split folding rear seats.

The 3 Series is also the first BMW to come with an active spoiler which raises at 68mph to reduce drag and increase downforce. To begin with there will be three petrol engines and two diesel with either a six-speed manual or optional eight-speed automatic gearbox.

The GT costs £1300 more than the Touring with the entry-level 320i SE priced at £28,830 while the cheapest diesel is the 318d SE at £29,910 – slightly more than an Audi A5 Sportback 2.0 TDIe. The 318d is also the most economical with a claimed 62.8mpg and CO2 of 119g/km meaning cheap VED. A 325d version will be added to the range as will the four-wheel drive 320i xDrive.

Standard equipment includes 17-inch alloy wheels while M Sport version will become available with 19-inch wheels and lowered sports suspension.