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The BMW 5-Series Gran Turismo

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On: Mon, May 31, 2010 at 10:24AM | By: Sherry Christiansen

The BMW 5-Series Gran Turismo

BMW is well known for producing luxury sports sedans and the BMW 5 Series Gran Turismo is no exception. The Gran Turismo combines the precision handling of the 5-Series sport sedan with a hatchback body style that adds plenty of cargo space for passengers and their gear. At first glance, this car resembles a cross between the X6 and a BMW 7 Series sedan. The Gran Turismo shares much of its engineering with the 7-series that BMW launched last year as well as the 2010 5-series.

According to BMW, the car combines “the best attributes of an elegant sedan, a contemporary Sports Activity Vehicle and a classic Gran Turismo" (a Gran Turismo is a vehicle with the performance of a sports-car with luxury features and added cargo space). The 550i's twin-turbo direct-injected 4.4-liter V-8 puts out 400 hp and 450 lb.-ft. of torque. Combined with an 8-speed automatic transmission, the car can go from 0-60 mph in as little as 5.4 seconds.

The Gran Turismo has a variety of high-tech features, including 4th-generation iDrive, active suspension and driver-adjustable engine, transmission, power steering and traction control parameters. This is a vehicle that encompasses the very first BMW Brake Energy Regeneration feature, which controls when the alternator charges the battery. In the 550i GT, charging takes place when the car is decelerating.

The Gran Turismo has new front and rear multilink suspensions that are made mainly of aluminum, as are the doors, in order to keep the weight of the vehicle down.

The 5 Series Gran Turismo comes with a "bi-modal" trunk system, a new feature which allows access to the luggage compartment via either a traditional trunk opening or a large hatchback. The 550i Gran Turismos will also come standard with a huge panoramic sunroof.

The wheelbase is nearly identical to that of the 750i. But more importantly, the 5 GT's wheelbase and overall length are 3.8 and 3.6 inches longer than the new 5-series sedan. With the extra length of the car, spaciousness of the cabin, and unique hatchback feature, this is one of the most functional vehicles that BMW has designed.

Sticker price starts at $56,000 for a 535i with a 3.0-liter twin-turbo direct-injection straight-six engine that generates 300 hp and 300 pound-feet of torque.The car will go on sale in the U.S. in the fourth quarter of this year as a 2010 model.

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