Tony O'Kane | Jan 7, 2009

BMW bigwig Norbert Reithofer has confirmed that the automaker is indeed planning on launching a 3-Series-based luxury crossover to complement the 5-Series GT that's due sometime next year.

Speaking to Autocar, Mr Reithofer confirmed that the small crossover wagon would ride on the next-gen 3-Series platform and slot in between the 3-Series Touring and the X3 light SUV.

BMW calls it a Progressive Activity Sedan. We call it... well, what do you call it? As much as we respect BMW for its fine Bavarian engineering and devotion to delectable driving dynamics, we can't help but be amazed by the German automaker's relentless efforts to smash wildly disparate genres into one another.

The BMW X6? That's a sports coupe cross-bred with an SUV. BMW's CS Concept? Well, that was a four-door-coupe grand tourer with the silhouette of a hatchback. Heck, back in 2001 BMW unveiled the X Coupe concept, which for all intents and purposes looked like a jacked-up Z4 Coupe.

Whatever the case, the 3-Series GT is coming and BMW expects it to sell particularly well in North America, where motorists are steadily migrating from huge SUVs to smaller crossovers. Powerplants and gearboxes will be shared with the rest of the 3-Series range with rear-wheel-drive being standard.

An all-paw drivetrain expected to be offered as an option. The 3-Series GT will be taller than the regular 3-Series wagon and the driving position will also be higher, while a split tailgate like that on the 5-Series GT will boost the car's utility.

The BMW 3-Series GT is expected to arrive in European showrooms sometime in 2011, with a pricetag of around £27,000 ($55,800).

[Autocar]

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