BMW USA has revealed full details of the new Alpina B7, ahead of its public debut at the Geneva motor show on March 1st.
The car is the latest iteration of the Buchloe-based manufacturer’s range-topper, based on the BMW 7-series. Alpina rebuilds BMWs to its own specification, with higher levels of luxury and performance than the cars on which they’re based.
To that end, the new B7 uses BMW’s familiar 4.4-litre, twin-turbocharged V8, albeit tuned to a peak power output of 600bhp between 5750-6250rpm. There’s also a 590lb ft wallop of torque from 3000rpm (and 494lb ft from as little as 2000rpm), leading to some fairly startling performance figures – 0-60mph in 3.6sec, and an estimated 193mph top speed.
Alpina’s engine work extends to improvements to the air intake system, air filter housings and the intake manifold, all improving airflow. The company has also worked on cooling – an important factor for an executive express designed to cruise at high speeds on the autobahn – with a new air to water intercooler, external water coolers and a transmission oil cooler.
Mahle pistons and NGK spark plugs have been selected, each required to cope with 20psi of boost pressure from the two, twin-scroll turbochargers, and a 10.0:1 compression ratio.
Further aiding Alpina’s breathing improvements, a full stainless steel Alpina exhaust system reduces back pressure (while being lighter than the standard system) and lends a fruitier note to proceedings.
Traction improvements come via BMW’s xDrive all-wheel drive system, and gears are swapped using the usual 8-speed automatic transmission, equipped with Alpina’s Switch-Tronic setup. While Sport Mode and Launch Control reaffirm Alpina’s performance heritage, the transmission retains Comfort and Efficienct Dynamics functions for greater economy.
The 7-series’ suspension too has undergone work. Easiest to spot are the traditional Alpina Classic 20-spoke alloy wheels. Front wheels are 8.5×20 with 255/40 ZR20 Michelin Pilot Super Sport tyres wrapped around them, while the 10-inch wide rear wheels wear 295/35 ZR20 Super Sports. Behind these lurk a set of high-performance brakes.
The B7’s air suspension uses Dynamic Damper Control and Active Roll Stabilisation to ensure the substantial 7-series body is kept in check. Electronic damper settings and active rear-wheel steering, tuned to Alpina’s own settings, should hide the weight further. The suspension can be lowered or raised by almost an inch, depending on the driving surface.
Interior and exterior changes are the usual Alpina fare. There’s a subtle body kit, optional Deko set – Alpina’s familiar stripes – two twin-tailpipes emerging at the rear, and the option of Alpina’s blue and green metallic paint finishes. Inside Alpina has hand-finished the B7 with leather, blue and green stitching, new trim panels and an individual model plaque.