2014 BMW 328i xDrive Gran Turismo Long-Term Road Test - Introduction
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2014 BMW 328i xDrive Gran Turismo Long-Term Road Test

Introduction

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2014 BMW 328i xDrive Gran Turismo Long-Term Road Test: Introduction

February 26, 2014

BMW is taking a page out of Burger King's playbook these days with a strategy that says, "You can have it your way." The 3 Series lineup, and the related 4 Series lineup, is spread over coupes, sedans, wagons, crossovers and convertibles with a variety of engines and drivetrains. It's truly a marvel of modern, flexible car construction.

So when we decided to add a new 2014 BMW 3 Series to our Long-Term Road Test fleet, we had plenty of options. In the end, we decided to try one of the newest members of the family, the 3 Series Gran Turismo. It's a slightly longer version of the 3 Series sedan with a hatchback rear end. You get extra utility without the SUV look and feel. Sounded interesting, so we went for it.

What We Got
The least expensive version of the 2014 BMW 3 Series Gran Turismo is the one we got, the 328i xDrive. It's powered by a 2.0-liter, 240-horsepower turbocharged four-cylinder engine hooked to a standard eight-speed automatic transmission. All-wheel drive is also standard. Of course, we could've gotten BMW's slick six-cylinder 335i xDrive Gran Turismo for only $5,400 more, but the 328 will be the volume seller here and boasts 26 mpg combined. Sometimes you've gotta make grown-up decisions.

The 2014 BMW 328i xDrive Gran Turismo starts at $42,375. For this price, you get the aforementioned 2.0-liter four-cylinder, a Driving Dynamics Control module with four driving settings, halogen headlights, eight-way power front seats, leather-wrapped wheel, Bluetooth connectivity, iDrive with a 6.5-inch screen and a panoramic moonroof.

Our 328i GT also has the M Sport package ($3,750) that adds 18-inch wheels, sport seats, an M steering wheel, body kit and anthracite headliner, and also increases the top speed. We also got the Cold Weather package ($950) which heats the steering wheel and front and rear seats and adds headlight washers. The Dynamic Handling package ($1,000) includes the adaptive M suspension and variable sport steering, while the Premium package ($2,200) balances some of that sportiness with keyless entry, lumbar support and satellite radio. The final package option is the Technology package ($3,150) that adds navigation with a touchpad on top of the iDrive controller, head-up display, BMW Apps and enhanced Bluetooth smartphone connectivity.

Individual options beyond those big ones include M Sport brakes ($650) and a Harman Kardon stereo system ($875). Total cost, including a $925 destination and delivery fee is $55,500. BMW provided this vehicle for the purpose of this long-term road test.

Why We Got It
The 2014 BMW 328i xDrive Gran Turismo appears to tick all of the boxes: It's efficient. It's quick. It handles well. It's as close to a hatchback as we're likely to get out of BMW.

But does the reality of a $55,000 3 Series hatchback stand up to what we have in mind? We know this 2.0-liter produces good power, but is it any fun with the mandatory all-wheel drive? Is the slopeback body style an effective compromise between wagon and sedan, or would we have been better off going for either of those?

We've got 12 months and 20,000 miles to answer these questions and more. Follow along with our year-long test of the 2014 BMW 328i xDrive Gran Turismo on the Long-Term Road Test page to find out.

Best mpg: 25.0
Worst mpg: 20.6
Average mpg over 419 miles: 21

The manufacturer provided this vehicle for the purpose of evaluation.


Comments

  • bassrockerx bassrockerx Posts:

    if it was me i would get the harmon kardon stereo, cold weather package, premium package, dynamic handling package and the m sport brakes. the technology package just seems gimicky i guess i will need a review of the "bmw apps" t osee if its really worth it. and the M sport package is just a body kit and wheels and.. well it doesent make it look any more pretty so whats the point? if i had to spend 55k i would save the extra money on the technology and m sport package and just get the 335 upgrade. the way i see it the 3GT is very practical and it has more room than the 5 series sedan so you if you like big cars its kinda like a cheap way to get a 5 series. and you get the benifits of a smaller footprint so its overal easyer to manuver/park.

  • mcesarey_ mcesarey_ Posts:

    I love BMWs but 55 grand is MIGHTY steep for a 3 series with the base engine.

  • joner800 joner800 Posts:

    man, this thing is so fugly..!

  • throwback throwback Posts:

    55K for a 3 series. I am amazed at the prices BMW gets for it's cars.

  • Ugh. Every time I see someone in a 5 Gran Turismo, I wonder whether they just got "sold" by the BMW salesman that this would be some kind of new trend and they'd be near the fore-front of a new trend, while the salesman breathes a serious sigh of relief that he just unloaded one of the "unsellable" vehicles that's been sitting in inventory way too long. JMHO.

  • hybris hybris Posts:

    Honestly it look more like a fastback body style to me at least. Also it would seem that Edmunds STILL hasn't fixed the comments for these intros as you still have to comment first just read the updates unless you want to type in manually the html address to get to the comments page.

  • lowprofile lowprofile Posts:

    The BMW Crosstour. No really, I've seen it in real life.

  • bankerdanny bankerdanny Posts:

    Just once I would love to see you get a truly entry level BMW or Audi, one that stickers within a couple grand of base rather than one with options that add 29% to the price like this one. Or at least get a car with the base suspension and tires. You've long-term tested many many BMW's with sport suspensions and larger wheels and summer tires. How about telling us if living with a base suspension and 17's with all-seasons really degrades the day-to-day ownership experience.

  • cbrandi_ cbrandi_ Posts:

    Amazing, $55,000 for a 4 cylinder hatchback. Who'd be crazy enough to buy one?

  • So, just to be clear... This is a $55,000 BMW 3 Series without a backup camera or xenon headlights?...

  • vroom2 vroom2 Posts:

    Those things are so ugly they may as well hand them over to the press in the hope they say something nice about them.

  • evodad evodad Posts:

    These things are so goddamned ugly. Everytime I see one of the 5 series GT's I wonder what the idiot driving it was thinking when they bought it, perhaps they finally traded in their beloved aztek or something.

  • diigii diigii Posts:

    At 42K, but no HID headlights? I'm not a fan of HID headlights but at this price range, it's a glaring omission. No pun intended.

  • mnorm1_ mnorm1_ Posts:

    After reading the introduction, it comes down to: $55,000 for this, really, $55,000 for this? The phrase attributed to PT Barnum is correct.

  • lmbvette lmbvette Posts:

    Let me be the first to say "Is it April Fools Day already?" Seriously, this is one of the most awkward vehicles on the road today. Right up there with the 5 GT and the X6, and that is really saying something. The sad thing is that I really love hatchbacks, and this car leaves me cold. They have one of these parked/displayed at a swanky higher-end retail/restaurant plaza near where I live. It has been parked there for over 6 months. I'm not surprised that the dealership does not want it sitting on their lot. LOL Also, 55k for the 4 cylinder is just ridiculous.

  • fordson1 fordson1 Posts:

    "We know this 2.0-liter produces good power, but is it any fun with the mandatory all-wheel drive? Is the slopeback body style an effective compromise between wagon and sedan, or would we have been better off going for either of those?" Is it any fun being over four thousand pounds and with a hip point about 5 inches higher than a regular 3 series? Is it any fun driving around in a car that's ugly as sin? I mean, since you asked...

  • $55,000 and it doesn't have HID headlights?!? My ten year old Mazda3 has those...

  • stiney stiney Posts:

    Well, I sure don't see BMW as a value. For the price of this "bottom rung" 3 series Gran Turismo you could buy a well equipped Mazda6 AND a nice Mazda CX-5. Both excellent, efficient and dynamically well-sorted. But, as PT Barnum has been known to say: "there's a sucker born every minute".

  • "Of course, we could've gotten BMW's slick six-cylinder 335i xDrive Gran Turismo for only $5,400 ......Sometimes you've gotta make grown-up decisions." And then you load up the 328 so it is about $5k more expensive than the 335. Bravo.

  • legacygt legacygt Posts:

    $5400 for the upgrade to the 335 seems a much better value than nearly $4000 for the M Sport package which is a really a lot of nothing.

  • Where did the comments go?

  • fsunole fsunole Posts:

    $56K and no HID headlights and if my eyes are correct, no backup camera either. BMW has gone crazy with the new 3's pricing. You could get a loaded E90 335 brand new for $47k only a few years ago.

  • jps429 jps429 Posts:

    I know this vehicle was provided to you by BMW and all but, at 55k this car not having xenon lights is 100% RIDICULOUS.

  • Options are $13,000 but the lifetime supply of Kool-Aid is free of charge.

  • fordson1 fordson1 Posts:

    Yeah - the only way to see comments is to add another comment. Beautiful system.

  • Interesting article indeed - Total cost, including a $925 destination and delivery fee is $55,500 @ BMW provided this vehicle for the purpose of this long-term road test. I'm 'guessing' since it was provided from BMW (loaner so to speak) no sales tax? I still get can't over the thought of dropping $60,000 thousand dollars ($55,500 + Sales tax) on any 4 cylinder, 240 HP vehicle! Just say'in.

  • horsepwr1 horsepwr1 Posts:

    It is incredible how bad looking the BMW Gran Turismo's are. Who would drive that at a premium price?

  • darthbimmer darthbimmer Posts:

    Once upon a time the way to get a bigger 3 series was called the 5 series, and the way to get hatchback functionality without an SUV was called a wagon. There's a novel idea-- a 5 series wagon.

  • mnorm1_ mnorm1_ Posts:

    Still prefer the inside line version, the new site/software isn't so good

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