3-Series. 3-Series GT. 3-Series Touring. 4-Series. 4-Series Gran Coupe. X3. X4. Not too long ago, it was simple to decipher BMW’s model lineup and nomenclature. One sausage, many lengths. These days, you need the Rosetta Stone for niche variants to figure out what’s what. But I did have a brief moment of clarity on the floor of the New York Auto Show.
It turns out, the 4GC is really just a 5-door hatchback/liftback, like the old Plymouth Horizon (or Sundance, as shown above) or the Skoda Octavia. It’s a very practical bodystyle, but hatchback is a dirty word to American car buyers, so it needs to be dressed up in what Paul Fussel would call “BAD” language.
I still don’t understand how the 3-Series GT, 4-Series Gran Coupe and X4 aren’t entirely redundant, to say nothing of the 3-Series Touring aka station wagon. Even with the insatiable quest for volume, they are all basically the same thing, just riding a little higher and gaining a little height, right?
Then again, the 3-GT (above – ignore the F-Type) is just…the same thing. But dressed up as…a pseudo-crossover hatchback thing…? So, tell me again BMW fans, what’s the difference between a 328i xDrive Gran Turismo and a 428i Gran Coupe xDrive? Oh hell, I give up.