With the new 8-Series coupe on its way, BMW is making big changes to its 6-Series lineup. For 2018, BMW is adding this bulbous hatchback version of the 5-Series sedan to the lineup, calling it the 6-Series Gran Turismo. No, we don't really get it either.
This car is actually a replacement for the old 5-Series GT, which apparently sold well enough to justify a second generation. In case you forgot, the 5-series GT was based on the sedan, with a taller roofline that tumbled into a fastback liftgate.. The new 6-Series GT is a new generation of a similar concept, wearing a new name badge.
For 2018, the US will get a single version of this car: The six-cylinder, all-wheel drive 640i xDrive GT. Like the 540i xDrive, it's powered by a 3.0-liter straight-six that sends 335 hp to all four wheels via an eight-speed automatic gearbox. In the 5-Series, it's an excellent drivetrain, so we expect it to be stellar in the 6-Series.
The 6-series GT does 0-60 in 5.1 seconds—0.3 slower than a comparable 5-series, likely due to the GT’s nearly 400-lb weight gain. The new liftback rides on a slightly longer wheelbase, giving the GT more legroom and a much larger trunk—31 cubic feet of cargo space to the 5 series' 18.7. Otherwise, the interior of the 6-Series GT appears to be nearly identical to that of the 5-Series. That's a good thing, since the 5-Series has one of the nicest interiors in its class.
Base price for the 640i xDrive GT is set at $69,700, nearly $11,000 more than a 540i xDrive. That's because the 6-Series GT comes with more luxuries as standard: Air suspension on the rear axle, BMW's Active Driving Assistant, 19-inch wheels, and full LED headlights, among other things. Naturally, there's an optional M Sport package too.
If the 540i is any indication, the 640i GT should be a great luxury car, albeit with looks that don't seem to fit the 6-series family we've come to admire. Plus, the GT seems to be the latest example of BMW muddying its own lineup, the car occupying the very narrow space between the 5-Series sedan and the fastback X6 SUV.
At least BMW will soon offer an honest-to-god two-door coupe in the upcoming 8-Series.