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Facelifted BMW 3 Series Gran Turismo to go on sale in July

An updated version of BMW's practical 3 Series Gran Turismo will go on sale later this summer

Words ByDarren Moss

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This is the facelifted BMW 3 Series Gran Turismo. It’s designed to be a larger, more practical hatchback alternative to the regular BMW 3 Series saloon, but still competes against that car’s key rivals - the Mercedes-Benz C-Class, Jaguar XE and our 2016 Car of the Year, the Audi A4 - as well as larger cars like the Audi A5 Sportback.

This latest version will go on sale in the UK in July, with prices starting from Β£30,405.

What is it?

BMW’s 3 Series Gran Turismo (often shortened to 3 Series GT) has only been on sale for three years, having arrived in the UK back in 2013.

For this facelifted model, BMW has fitted new LED headlights, and modified front and rear bumpers designed to bring the 3 Series GT in line with the facelifted 3 Series saloon, which went on sale in July.. The car sits on 18in alloy wheels, but buyers can opt for larger 19in wheels if they wish.

The size of the 3 Series GT hasn’t changed, so its boot capacity remains the same. With 520 litres of storage space on board (without folding the rear seats down), the GT actually offers more carrying space than the 3 Series Touring estate, which doesn’t shy away from large luggage loads.

What engines can I choose from?

Drivers can choose from five diesel engines and three petrol units, and all bar the 320d and 330d models can be had with BMW’s xDrive four-wheel drive system.

The most efficient option in the range is the 318d, which is claimed to return up to 65.7mpg while emitting just 112g/km of CO2. Buyers can choose between a six-speed manual gearbox, or an eight-speed automatic.

As with the BMW 3 Series saloon, we’d recommend that buyers stick to the 320d model, which is a good bet for both private buyers and company car drivers.

What equipment does it come with?

The interior of the 3 Series GT is almost identical to that of the 3 Series saloon and Touring models. It features a flatter infotainment screen on top of the dashboard, as well as new trim materials used throughout.

The list of standard equipment for this latest 3 Series GT model has also been revised, and now includes climate control, keyless start, LED headlights and front fog lights, automatic wipers, and a 7.0in infotainment screen with Bluetooth connectivity.

Later this year, the 3 Series GT will also be offered with Apple CarPlay, allowing users to control their iOS devices through the car’s infotainment system.

Drivers can choose to go for the Sport Line and Luxury Line models too, while the range-topping M Sport model brings with it a sporty body kit.

The options list also now includes assistance features like adaptive cruise control, parking assistant and a 360-degree camera system.

How much does it cost?

Prices for the facelifted 3 Series GT will start from Β£30,405 when sales begin in July. That’s almost a Β£400 increase on today’s car, which starts from Β£30,060. By comparison, the regular BMW 3 Series saloon starts from Β£25,160, while the 3 Series Touring starts from Β£26,590.

The Audi A5 Sportback, possible the 3 Series GT’s closest rival, is priced from Β£30,035

How good are its rivals?

As well as the obvious German rivals mentioned above, all of which are very well regarded, the added practicality of the BMW 3 Series GT also brings it into the territory of Audi’s A5 Sportback - which is also practical, but is now beginning to show its age.

The 3 Series GT offers more space than the 3 Series Touring, but also benefits from a larger interior and a higher driving position. Private buyers can usually find hefty discounts at dealerships, so haggling could pay off.

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