Sunday 15 February 2009

Concept Car: BMW 5 Series GT

The BMW 5 Series Gran Turismo Concept is all about the "driving experience." At least, that is the theme BMW wants to strike with this car and what inspired its creation in the first place.

The 5 Series Gran Turismo Concept is a Progressive Activity Sedan or PAS. There's the luxury sedan-level elegance and comfort of the 7 Series balanced with the sporty, outdoorsyness of the X6 as well. It's a concept, so there are few details on power plants and transmissions and lots of talk about style and design.

The Gran Turismo is a 4 door, 4 seat coupe, a design that has become somewhat of a fashion. The GT is a big car - larger than the 5 Series in every dimension. It measures 4,998mm in length 1,901mm in width and 1,559mm in height with a limo-like 3,070mm wheelbase.

Open the frameless doors and a panorama glass roof with BMW promising that the GT offers the passengers at the rear the same legroom as in the 7 Series and virtually the same headroom as in the X5.

If necessary, the rear seats can move fore-and-aft by up to 100 mm so that with the seats moved as far forward as possible, the occupants still enjoy the same legroom as in the 5 Series, with luggage capacity increasing from 430 litres to 570 litres. But the rear seats fold down to give this grand tourer 1650 litres of luggage space well-suited to the wanderer in you. And the panorama glass roof provides the sense of openness you want to feel on the road.

By naming this vehicle a Gran Turismo BMW is looking to re-establish the iconic ideal of the Gran Turismo as a comfy coupe meant for traveling in style. It remains to be seen if this BMW will fly as an actual production model. But they've been known to try stranger things and succeed at it.

BMW did not release any mechanical details on the 5 Series GT that will make its first public appearance at the forthcoming Geneva motorshow in early March. Expect to see the production version of the PAS at this year's Frankfurt motorshow in September with sales beginning in Europe towards the end of the year or early 2010.

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