Tuesday, March 31, 2009

BMW 5-series Gran Turismo Concept - Auto Shows

The concept you see here will hit European streets in production form in November of this year looking very similar and keeping the 5-series Gran Turismo name. (It has also been known as the "Space-Functional Concept" and "Progressive Activity Sedan" during its development.) Its tail will wear a "GT" badge, and it will make use of BMW's confusing new "sDrive" and "xDrive" nomenclature.

To us, it looks like an oversized hatchback, but BMW arrogantly insists the 5-series GT is "a new concept not just for BMW, but for the entire automotive world." To corroborate this theory, the company points out some unique elements, of which two stand out. One of them is the split tailgate, which you can partly or fully open. The partial opening is not the window, as on some station wagons, but the lower part. The trunk then opens as it would on a conventional sedan. The point of this complex and heavy tailgate, according to BMW, is that the trunk can be opened without creating a draft on rear passengers’ necks. Really.

The other notable feature is a partition between the passenger compartment and the trunk, about an inch thick. Even when you fold down the rear seats, the loading area ends at the partition, although it can fold as well if you require more space. BMW says that decoupling the loading area from the passenger compartment increases acoustic comfort. We can think of a similar idea from the late 1980s, when the Citro├źn XM was launched with a glass partition behind the rear seats. That “feature” was eventually discontinued.

Keep Reading: BMW 5-series Gran Turismo Concept - Auto Shows

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