The new 6 GT is destined to go on UK sale in November and will form part of a four-model line-up for the 6 Series. The GT range will start off with the £46,810 rear-wheel drive 630i Gran Turismo SE rising to the £57,570 four-wheel drive 640i xDrive Gran Turismo M Sport.
The adoption of the 6 Series name for a replacement for the 5 GT is in line with the German car maker’s efforts to place greater emphasis on luxury at the upper end of its line-up. Autocar understands that the existing 6 Series coupé, cabriolet and Gran Coupé will be phased out within the next two years in a move that will leave the new 6 Series Gran Turismo as the sole 6 Series model. Today’s 6 Series coupé and cabriolet will be indirectly replaced by the 8 Series coupé and cabriolet due in 2018 and 2019 respectively.
The new 6 Series Gran Turismo draws heavily on the latest 5 and 7 Series, and will be produced alongside them at BMW’s Dingolfing plant in Germany. It is built on BMW’s latest CLAR (Cluster Architecture platform), which helps to endow it with weight savings of up to 150kg over equivalent 5 Series GT derivatives through the use of a greater degree of aluminium and hot-formed, high-strength steel within its body structure.
The standard suspension has rear air springs and automatic self-levelling but, as with the 5 Series and 7 Series, buyers can specify a more advanced air suspension featuring air springs at the front and rear, together with variable damping control and active roll control.
The 6 Series Gran Turismo also offers a combination of optional four-wheel drive and active rear steering on variants at the top of the model range.
The 6 Series GT rides on the same 3070mm wheelbase as the 5 GT and is the same width, but is 21mm lower and 87mm longer. The new model keeps its predecessor’s frameless doors and its large, liftback tailgate but the boot is 110 litres bigger than the 5 GT’s, at 610 litres with the 40:20:40 split rear seat up or 1800 litres with it completely folded down.