2014 BMW 1-Series Gran Turismo spy shots
The prototype you see here is a five-door with a fairly conventional compact MPV body, although the hood appears to be very low and the overhangs quite short. A larger seven-seat version is also planned and was spotted in prototype form recently as well.
As for the styling of the new 1-Series GT range, 2012’s BMW Concept Active Tourer points the way. The styling of this concept is something like a luxury hatchback, though there's a slight flavor of crossover mixed in as well.
Underpinning the range will be BMW’s new UKL platform, which will be shared with the third-generation MINI Cooper and its various spinoffs. The platform comes with front-wheel drive in its most basic form but has the option of all-wheel drive thanks to a Haldex-style multi-plate clutch setup.
BMW Concept Active Tourer, 2012 Paris Auto ShowEnlarge Photo
The thought of a front-wheel-drive model wearing the BMW roundel has always seemed like sacrilege to car enthusiasts, but the realities of the modern auto industry have apparently conspired to make the car a necessity for even luxury automakers. Remember, as much as 80 percent of BMW 1-Series drivers aren’t aware that their cars are actually rear-wheel drive.
While a U.S. launch for the 1-Series GT is still up in the air, European readers can look forward to the car's showroom appearance in the first half of 2014.