Busy BMW debuts 328d diesel, Concept hybrid and 3-series crossover at NY Auto Show

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BMW’s press conference proved to be such a showcase that even Bob Barker would be proud as the company lifted the veil off a number of new models at the 2013 New York Auto Show.

Speaking to the crowd of  journalists on Wednesday, BMW of North America CEO Ludwig Willisch talked up the brand’s penchant for innovation, dynamics, and of course the automaker’s performance pedigree.

Much of the talk centered on innovation, talking up the company’s soon to launch 2013 BMW 320i Sedan ($33,000), as well its continued expansion into alternative drivetrains such as battery-powered electrics and clean-burning diesels.

However, the focused quickly shifted as BMW unveiled not one, not two, but three new models.

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With diesel vehicles such a popular option across Europe, BMW is looking to follow in VW’s footsteps by promoting and implementing more diesel options for American buyers. And with 180 hp and 280 lb.ft of torque, the 2014 BMW 328d is that vehicle.

What’s more impressive, however, is the car’s fuel efficiency: BMW says it will get 45 miles per gallon; roughly five miles per gallon less than the 2013 Toyota Prius hybrid liftback.

BMW announced that the 328d will be available in both rear-wheel and xDrive (all-wheel drive) configurations.

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Following the 328d was the all-new 2014 BMW 3 Series Gran Turismo (GT), which is BMW’s oddly-shaped crossover/hatchback/wagon combo rolled into one. The 2014 GT will be available with two engine options: a brand new twin-turbo four-cylinder or an in-line six-cylinder.

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Finally, BMW lifted the hood (not literally, of course) on the company’s Concept Active Tourer. The Concept Active Tourer shares a design and powertrain philosophy with the upcoming BMW i3, which is slated to launch later this year.

Powering the Concept is a 1.5-liter three-cylinder gasoline engine and an electric motor. BMW says the combination will produce 190 horsepower and 147 lb.ft of torque and should return an estimated (and amazing if true) 94 mpg on the highway.

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