The BMW 3-Series has long ruled the roost of European sport sedans. Following the Bavarian carmaker's move into the 4-door Gran Turismo space with its larger 5-Series GT in 2010, the 3-Series Gran Turismo combines the best of the 3-Series DNA with a unique package that puts it in a league all its own.
For 2016, the 3-Series Gran Turismo is offered in one of two all-wheel-drive models: 328i xDrive or 335i xDrive. The 328i is powered by a 240-horsepower turbocharged 2.0L inline 4-cylinder, while the 335i carries a 300-horsepower turbocharged 3.0L inline six. Both engines feature twin-scroll turbos with variable valve control and direct injection, and each is mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission with steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters. Auto start-stop is standard, as is Driving Dynamics Control, which includes settings for ECO, SPORT, COMFORT AND SPORT+. The 328i gets an EPA estimated 22 mpg city and 33 mpg highway.
In addition to BMW's excellent xDrive all-wheel-drive system, the GT's precise handling is courtesy of a double-pivot type front suspension with spring struts and an anti-roll bar, while the rear is sprung with a 5-link setup with cast aluminum upper transverse arms. High-performance 4-wheel ventilated disc brakes with anti-lock braking, dynamic brake control and cornering brake control are also standard. Both models ride on 18-inch alloys. The 335i features Xenon Adaptive Headlights with dynamic auto leveling, while the 328i includes halogen headlights.
The 3-Series GT is very well equipped, with standard comfort and entertainment amenities like rain-sensing windshield wipers, eight-way power front sport seats, a multi-function sport steering wheel with audio, cruise and Bluetooth controls, automatic climate control, power panoramic moonroof and BMW's iDrive system with integrated 6.5-inch touchpad and an automatic tailgate.
The Gran Turismo can be ordered with select packages, including Luxury and M Sport. The Luxury adds unique wheels, anthracite wood or burled walnut inlays, chrome exterior accents and leather upholstery with contrasting stitching. The M Sport comes with an aerodynamic kit, special M Sport wheels, an M Sport steering wheel and Dakota leather upholstery.
Standalone options for the 3-Series Gran Turismo include enhanced-performance M Sport brakes, a 16-speaker harman/kardon surround sound audio system, iDrive-integrated navigation, heated front seats, active cruise control and a self-parking feature that uses ultrasonic sensors to detect a suitable parking space, then engages proper throttle and steering inputs to park the car. Popular packages include a Cold Weather Package with heated seats and steering wheel, a Premium Package with exclusive leather choices, lumbar support and satellite radio, and a Technology Package, which adds a suite of BMW apps, navigation, a full-color heads-up display and enhanced USB and Bluetooth integration.