BMW 5-Series Gran Turismo Concept
BMW enters a new niche with a stunning hatchback version of the 5-Series!
It’s official – the BMW 5-Series is hatching out! This is theall-new Gran Turismo, a striking hatchback crossover that will sit atthe very top of the new 5-Series range when sales start later this year.
Mixinga four-door coupe body with raised, sliding rear seats like an MPV anda Skoda Superb-style twin-door hatchback, the Gran Turismo enters a newsector for BMW, targeting buyers who want a flexible luxury car, butone that’s not an estate or an SUV.
This almost showroom-readyconcept will make its worldwide debut at the Geneva Motor Show inMarch, with the finished article arriving in the UK in October, pricedat around £40,000. And BMW bosses hope it will attract new customers tothe brand.
“The conventional saloon has been around since thecar industry started so perhaps now is the time for something new,”said BMW board member Ian Robertson. “The Gran Turismo fills a newniche and is an appropriate alternative to an SUV.”
Debuting the‘face’ of the next generation 5-Series – which will be revealed in 2010– with larger kidney grilles and new lights similar to those of the CSconcept car, the Gran Turismo sits on a new modular rear-wheel-driveplatform that will also underpin the next generation 5-Series.
Atthe rear, there’s a steeply sloping coupe-style roofline with X6-styletail-lights, while all the doors feature pillarless windows. Thetailgate is similar to Skoda’s twin-door, first seen on the Superb,although BMW maintains that it has been developing the boot concept fora number of years.
It can be used as a hatchback, or like asaloon with just the lower section opening up. Two buttons under thebootlid allow owners to switch between the two modes.
Inside,the concept has ample seating for two rear passengers. Each chair ismounted around six inches higher than in a regular 5-Series, and can beindividually slid backwards and forwards. The seat backs can tilt too.A body length of five metres, a long wheelbase and wide rear doors aidaccess.
“The Gran Turismo is easier to get in and out of thaneither an SUV or a saloon,” explained Chris Bangle, who was present atthe Munich unveiling in his final capacity as BMW design boss. “But ithas more rear seat space than a 7-Series. This is a car that has beendesigned from the inside out with rear passenger room similar to thatin first class air travel.”
Up front, the driver and passengeralso sit higher than they do in a regular 5-Series while Bangle’sdesign team has brought in a new dashboard with a more prominent centreconsole that’s covered in high gloss piano black material.
Therear seats also fold down and thanks to a removable bulkhead, theboot’s 430-litre capacity can be expanded to 1,650 litres, giving theGran Turismo the second largest carrying capacity in the BMW range,after the X5.
The production version will be offered with threerear seats, with the two-seater configuration of the concept availableas an option. The extended sunroof, which stretches over the rearpassengers’ heads, is likely to be carried over to the finished modeltoo.
BMW expects the Gran Turismo to account for 12-15 percentof 5-Series sales with around 2,500 models sold in the UK each year.Engines will mirror the next generation 5-Series line-up with the rangekicking off with 3.0-litre petrol and turbodiesel six-cylinderpowerplants.
Expect more powerful turbocharged V8s too, whileBMW is also likely to make a hybrid model available in 2010. Althoughbosses would not comment, it’s expected that the Gran Turismo heralds anew range of BMW models, which could be followed by a 3-Series flagshipwith a similar combination of style and practicality.
In this review
- 1IntroductionHome of the best Geneva Motor Show coverage on the web.
- 2MINI John Cooper Works Convertible - official picturesFastest MINI convertible ever poised for Geneva debut
- 3BMW 5-Series Gran Turismo Concept - currently readingBMW enters a new niche with a stunning hatchback version of the 5-Series!
- 4Fiat 500 CabrioFiat reveals first ever pictures of new 500C ahead of its Geneva debut next month.
- 5Rolls Royce 200EX revealedSpirit of legendary British luxury car maker lives on in son of Phantom...
- 6Saab 9-3X - official picsThe new 9-3X promises SUV-like off-road ability combined with the practicality of an estate.
- 7Wraps come off E-Class CoupéMerc's CLK replacement has arrived, and we have first pictures of the new stunner.
- 8MiTo GTA blasts offSizzling flagship gets a high-power turbo. It also features bodykit and stiffer suspension
- 9Audi A4 allroad - officialWith its raised suspension and toughened bodywork, the new A4 Allroad is just as happy on the rough stuff as it is on Tarmac
- 10911 GT3 - first picsHarder and faster version of the 911 will debut at Geneva
- 11Electric 2+2 on showMitsubishi is set to reveal a new version of its electric i MiEV Sport concept at the Geneva Motor Show in March.
- 12Star of future is light fantasticStudy uses tailgate as screen to warn following drivers.
- 13MINI’s new base champEntry-level One is the cheapest and most frugal Clubman yet.
- 14Fastest BentleyNew model from Bentley guzzles biofuel, and delivers rocketship performance.
- 15Vauxhall AmperaVauxhall parent company Opel plans to lift the lid on new plans for electric cars at this year's Geneva Motor Show.