This 3 Series GT facelift continues to be powered by the famed 2.0-litre turbo-charged diesel engine. This inline four-cylinder unit churns out a maximum power of 187bhp at 4,000rpm and a peak torque of 400Nm available from 1,750rpm. The brand’s eight-speed automatic gearbox is the only transmission on offer. Tap the push button to start and you will not be greeted by a growl or a burble. This is a good thing as the engine is also surprisingly silent despite being a diesel unit. Excellent cabin insulation cuts the noise down even further. The free-revving unit has a linear power delivery and on the run, be it the city or highways, there is loads of torque on tap to keep the car going. The engine responds to the throttle inputs nicely with the gearbox feeling at home in both automatic and manual mode. The gear shifts are quick and predictable thus giving you the option of manually shifting too, through paddle shifters or the tip-tronic function.
And as experienced with the 320d, this engine is also very fuel efficient, confirming why this oil-burner is still so popular with buyers. The ECO PRO and Comfort driving modes are mapped in such a way that they help improve efficiency with quicker upshifts and delayed downshifts. The car still boasts of the thrilling performance numbers that GTs are known for. The claimed top speed of the car is 226kmph and on our tests, the vehicle sprinted from standstill to 100kmph in 7.8 seconds.
Now BMWs in general are known for their ride and handling and the GT also scores high in the dynamics department. As rapidly as the car reaches top speeds, so also does its four disc brakes help the car cut speeds quickly and stop confidently. Switch to the Sport or Sport + mode for a sharper throttle response and reduced steering assist to get a more connected feel. The latter mode also allows the brave-hearted to get ambitious, switch off the ESP and bring the tail out on occasions. The direct and communicative steering weighs up nicely as the rear-wheel drive chassis lets the GT take the corners fast, keeping the driver involved. However, unlike the sedan, the GT rolls more around tight bends. Still, its pliant suspension does cushion the occupants from the worst of Indian roads. However, it does tend to pitch or wallow over crests and joints on the highway. Sure, the sharper ruts and edges of potholes send a jolt through the cabin at high speeds, but the comfort mode takes these in its stride in a better way than the sport modes. Similarly, the increased 165mm ground clearance does not give enough reassurance to coast over big bumps confidently, but it sure helps the car glide over small ones with ease.