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by Jay Traugott
BMW's latest new model is a hatchback/wagon version of its ever popular 3 Series. But the big question is: whose going to buy it?
Just a day after official pictures leaked online, BMW has unveiled the whole skinny on its new 3 Series GT. And what do you know... it looks like a bloated 3 Series for the second day in a row. We'll admit that its overall styling is better than the eye-hurting 5 Series GT but the idea of a raised sedan with a two-tier rear hatch just seems weird no matter how you look at it. Compared to the standard 3 Series wagon, the Gran Turismo is 7.9 inches longer, 3.2 inches taller, with a 4.3-inch longer wheelbase.
This gives rear passengers an extra 2.3 inches of rear legroom, while cargo space, as you'd expect, is also increased. With a total of 18.3 cubic feet, the GT is still a bit larger than the wagon in this department. Power comes from a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder with 240 horsepower and 255 lb-ft of torque. The 335i comes with the 3.0-liter turbocharged six-cylinder that's good for 300 horsepower and 300 lb-ft of torque. Buyers can also check the box for the optional M Sport package, which adds aerodynamic bits such as front apron with a large air intake, rear bumper with diffuser and side skirts.
18- or 19-inch alloys are also included along with the typical M badges throughout the interior. Despite all of BMW's typical high-tech toys, solid build quality and performance, the big question is whether the new 3 Series GT will find buyers, unlike the 5 Series GT. Expect to find the 2014 3 Series GT arrive in showrooms late 2013.