These first official images of BMW's new Active Tourer Concept confirm our suspicions that the photo sourced from the cover of the next issue of Auto Bild magazine that we shared with you earlier today, did indeed show the real thing.
To answer the first question you are most likely to have about the Paris Motor Show-bound Active Tourer study, yes, it is intended for production - likely as a 1-Series model with the Gran Turismo moniker that is used by BMW on its more practical vehicles. One of its more direct rivals will be the Mercedes-Benz B-Class small MPV.
But that's not what makes the Active Tourer Concept really special, what does is its platform that will be shared with the next generation of Mini-branded cars and BMW's decision to break with tradition and enter the realm of front-wheel drive models.
The Active Tourer Concept as well as the production vehicle it will spawn next year are based on the BMW Group's UKL1 platform that will be available in two lengths.
The tall-five door hatchback has an exterior length of 4,350mm (171.2-inches), a width of 1,834mm (72.2-inches) and a total height of 1,560mm (61.4-inches), while it rides on a relatively long wheelbase of 2,670mm (105.2-inches).
For reference, the new Mercedes-Benz B-Class measures 4,359mm long, 1,786mm wide and 1,557mm tall.
According to BMW, the study is geared towards "customers of the premium segment who appreciate a high level of comfort, a raised seating position and a generous amount of space," adding that it will also be attractive to families "who attach importance to functionality and versatility as well as lifestyle and athletic flair."
The design of the Concept Active Tourer is in line with BMW's newest creations, namely the 1-Series, 3-Series and 5-Series models.
While the exterior won't change much (think of less fancy trim and 16- instead of 20-inch wheels), the design of the five-seat interior will evidently be toned down several notches when the car enters production within the next year.
Some notable features include the large panoramic glass roof, the versatile luggage compartment thanks to the variable rear backrests, which can be split 40/20/40, and a clip-on track system that allows folding tables to be easily added to the back of the front seats.
Under the hood, the concept sports a plug-in hybrid drivetrain comprising BMW's newly released 1.5-liter turbocharged three-cylinder petrol engine driving the front wheels, and a synchronous electric motor that acts on the rear axle, and which if necessary, can power the car on its own.
BMW says the total system output is in excess of 188hp (190PS), which is good enough for a 0-100km/h (62mph) sprint time of under eight seconds and a top speed of around 200km/h (124mph).
It returns an average fuel consumption of less than 2.5lt/100km (94mpg US or 112.9mpg UK) with CO2 emissions of less than 60g/km. Keep in mind the aforementioned consumption figure is with the use of the battery that can power the car by itself for more than 30 kilometers (19 miles).
It remains to be seen if the production 1-Series GT will be offered with hybrid / plug-in hybrid drivetrains, but it is certain that BMW's new 1.5-liter turbocharged petrol and diesel engines will be on the list.