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BMW Alpina B7

By luanpa in | August 22, 2010 | (1) Comment

The move into the car world began more than 40 years ago when company founder Burkard Bovensiepen steered the family business into BMW tuning with a dual Weber carburetor kit for BMW’s then-new 1500 sedan. BMW’s top brass was impressed enough by the quality of Alpina’s work that by the mid-1960s, Alpina-tuned cars were covered under the standard BMW factory warranty. The two companies have been working closely together ever since.

In fact, just as the totally redesigned 2009 7-series reaches American shores, Alpina brought its high-performance variant to the Geneva show (a long-wheelbase version based on the 750Li was later shown in Tokyo). As with the previous Alpina-massaged 7-series, it’s called the B7. This latest model uses a more powerful version of the 400-hp, direct-injection 4.4-liter twin-turbo V-8 found in the new 750i and 750Li.

Alpina managed to keep power figures a carefully guarded secret prior to the show, but we now know that the B7 will boast 500 hp and 516 lb-ft of torque. That is almost spot-on with the previous version of the B7, which was available in limited numbers in the States. The 2008 B7 had an identical 500 hp from a 4.4-liter V-8 engine, although the extra power came courtesy of a compact centrifugal supercharger.

According to Alpina, the twin-turbo B7 sprints from 0 to 62 mph in only 4.7 seconds. Top speed is electronically limited at 174 mph. That’s not bad for an über-luxury sports sedan with a six-speed automatic gearbox and room for five people (plus loads of luggage).

Recalibrated springs lower the ride height by 0.6 inch in the front and 0.4 inch at the rear. A tiny rear spoiler, Alpina’s traditional 20-spoke wheels, and more aggressive front air intakes add a sporty touch. Thankfully, the garish Alpina racing stripes are optional.

While the previous Alpina B7 was available here in limited numbers through BMW dealers, a company spokesperson told us that no decision has been made about whether or not the new B7 will come to the U.S.

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