BMW has given its 3 Series Gran Turismo a mid-life facelift, following a similar exercise for the regular 3 Series range late last year.
Like its donor car, the GT’s facelift is relatively subtle, with the 2017 model now getting standard LED headlights and front fog lights, along with mildly tweaked front and rear bumpers. At the back, the LED taillight has also been given a makeover, while the exhaust pipes are now larger. Models from the 320i and 320d upwards have twin tailpipes.
Inside, BMW says it has upgraded the car’s materials, including extra chrome around controls, new decorative wood elements, colours and leather trim to take perceived quality to new heights.
The BMW Navigation system Professional is now also available for the BMW 3 Series Gran Turismo. The most important menu items are presented as “tiles” for more intuitive use.
A new generation of engines are available for the BMW 3 Series Gran Turismo. The range consists of three all-new petrol units developing 135 kW/184 hp to 240 kW/326 hp and five diesel variants producing 110 kW/150 hp to 230 kW/313 hp – with classical rear-wheel drive or BMW xDrive all-wheel drive (which is unlikely to be offered in Australia) with manual or Steptronic automatic transmission. All the four- and six-cylinder petrol engines and four-cylinder diesels are taken from the newly developed, modular BMW EfficientDynamics engine family. The arrival of the updated BMW 3 Series Gran Turismo sees the new petrol engines slotting into this model’s line-up as well. An all-new addition to the diesel ranks, meanwhile, is the BMW 325d Gran Turismo. The other four-cylinder diesels have been available to customers since the launch of the new engine generation in summer 2015.
Considerable efficiency gains have been made with the new engines, despite their increased output. BMW claims the reductions in fuel consumption and CO2 emissions range from 4.5 per cent in the BMW 318d Gran Turismo to 13.8 per cent for the BMW 320d Gran Turismo. And further improved manual and automatic transmissions, the Auto Start Stop function, Brake Energy Regeneration, on- demand operation of ancillary units and the ECO PRO mode is also said to help the new BMW 3 Series Gran Turismo to set the benchmark for fuel economy and emissions.
The BMW 320i Gran Turismo, 318d Gran Turismo and 320d Gran Turismo come as standard with the six-speed manual gearbox, but can also be ordered with the eight-speed Steptronic automatic transmission as an option. All other engine variants feature the automatic as standard. And that means three more variants of the car (the BMW 330i Gran Turismo, BMW 340i Gran Turismo and BMW 325d Gran Turismo) are offered exclusively with the efficient Steptronic unit than was the case with the outgoing model. Improvements in efficiency, an increase in ratio spread and a reduction in converter slip during the gear-change process bring about a three per cent drop in fuel consumption and CO2 emissions. At the same time, customers can expect both driving comfort and shift comfort to be heading in the opposite direction.
The 2017 BMW 3 Series Gran Turismo will be launched in Europe next month, with local deliveries a few months later.