Gran Turismo 6 lovers, it’s time to get pumped. The next futuristic digital concept sports car is here, and it’s the BMW Vision Gran Turismo. BMW M loyalists will not be disappointed by the specially-designed Gran Turismo racer, which virtually melds familiar BMW design and styling cues with modern engineering and performance.
While the Mercedes-Benz Vision Gran Turismo that debuted at the Los Angeles auto show last November stole the show with its groundbreaking design, the BMW Vision Gran Turismo looks to be a more race-focused track machine. “It’s a precise driving machine engineered to race and win,” said BMW head of design Karim Habib in a statement.
Considering BMW’s strong history of racing success, it’s easy to see how the BMW Vision Gran Turismo fits into the company’s performance heritage. Wider fenders in the front and rear, large front and rear spoilers, short overhangs, a long hood, a rear-slung cabin, and the striped M livery (which traces the flow of air over the body) are unmistakable BMW hallmarks. In many ways the BMW Vision Gran Turismo resembles the M3 GT2 racecar, but made more compact in what Habib calls “an extreme package.”
In true BMW fashion, the Vision Gran Turismo uses a 3.0-liter inline six-cylinder engine driving the rear axle. Power is quoted at 549 hp and 502 lb-ft of torque, routed through a six-speed sequential transmission operated using steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters. Weight totals just 2601 pounds, which is balanced in a perfect 50:50 front-to-rear distribution ratio.
The BMW Vision Gran Turismo is now the second Vision Gran Turismo model to be introduced, following Gran Turismo creator Kazunori Yamauichi’s challenge for 22 automakers to design virtual sports cars for the future. GT6 has made headlines over the last year for its playable concept cars including the Toyota FT-1 and Acura NSX.
BMW and GT6 enthusiasts can get their first crack at the virtual race car on May 15, when it joins the BMW M exhibition at BMW Welt in Munich. Visitors will also have the opportunity to immerse themselves in the experience by sitting in a racing seat hooked up to an enveloping three-screen display.
Watch BMW’s videos for a first look at the BMW Vision Gran Turismo virtual concept in action, as well as the design and development process to bring it to life.