Alpina B7

BMW Alpina B7 2019 in the driving report: Brachiales from Buchloe

BMW Alpina B7 2019 in the driving report: Brachiales from Buchloe


At speed 180, a short moment remains to breathe. A quick look into the rearview mirror, a murmured "Sorry", just in case someone in the back of our BMW Alpina B7 2019 took over. One could not blame the person, after all, the top model of the small sports car manufacturer from Buchloe belongs to the most exclusive and fastest luxury limousines that you can buy for money. Fortunately, we are completely on our own today – and the moment of calm passes by as we approach the first chicane of the Salzburgring at an almost absurd speed.

For the facelift of the BMW 7 Series LCI also Alpina has thoroughly revised the B7. Especially in the well-filled engine compartment, the developers spend considerable effort and obstruct the latest expansion stage of the well-known 4.4-liter V8 biturbo. While the twelve-cylinder M760Li with its new petrol filter for the first time remains below the 600-horsepower limit, the new B7 does not seem to be impressed by the exhaust emission control measures that are also installed here.

Quite the opposite: with the help of a connected intercooler and further optimizations, the maximum torque of 800 Nm is now already available at 2,000 instead of 3,000 revolutions. With 608 hp, a top speed of 330 km / h and 3.6 seconds in the sprint at highway speed, the BMW Alpina B7 thus obtained the title as the strongest and fastest production sevens in the trade – and is likely to learn the respect of some super sports cars in view of these values.

BMW Alpina B7 2019: Facelift with a sportier design

From the outside, the facelift model is recognizable, among other things, on a redesigned front apron with silver Alpina lettering and – like the standard models – has narrower LED lights and the well-known giant kidney. At the rear, the designers have also allowed a new diffuser insert between the four round tailpipes, without endangering the understated character of Sichtcarbon or giant fins. The exclusive exterior color Alpina Blue or the well-proven elegant forged wheels in the 20 to 21 inch format are a matter of course in Buchloe anyway.

Despite its quite impressive appearance, the Alpina B7 still does not belong to those matt-lacquered excess advocates who announce their arrival from far away by shotgun volleys of wide-open exhaust flaps. He is just so damn fast, quietly murmurs idling in front of him and puts his performance when pedaling on the gas pedal without much fading into propulsion.

These are the qualities that Alpina customers all over the world and the B7, especially in Asia and America, value: unbridled power resulting in almost absurdly high speeds and unrivaled driving comfort.

Full braking in front of the Emco curve. Under nervous flickering of the taillights, the calipers bite into the front 395 and rear 398 millimeters large discs and compress the nearly 2.2-ton limousine with uncompromising elemental force. Yes, the Alpina B7 can be different too. A firm grip on the steering wheel, wet hands on fine Lavalina leather. And then suddenly everything is easy.

Electromechanically roll-stabilized, rear-wheel-steered and four-wheel drive, the 5.27-meter-long luxury liner dances in the face of its dimensions with almost provocative ease through the tight curve combination. In addition, the two-axle air suspension automatically lowers by 15 millimeters in the selected Sport Plus mode of the Driving Experience Switch for extra stability.

The overall package is as immediate as it is impressive. With full torque, the Alpina B7 pulls over all four wheels on the straight to send shortly afterwards in the famous Nockstein curve the Michelins in a fierce battle for the liability limit. Most chassis components can be ordered in their basic form in a normal BMW 7 Series. But Alpina has optimized the whole package down to the last detail, sharpened it and adapted it to its own dynamic requirements.

This allows the driver to choose between fine long-distance comfort and a tight performance setup, leaving the usual outstanding eight-speed ZF automatic transmission to work or even sorting gears using the buttons behind the steering wheel. Only in one thing takes an Alpina from the factory from the decision: the B7 is available only in the long version with 3.21 meters wheelbase.

BMW Alpina B7 2019: Driving modes for all occasions

We change through the different driving modes to "Comfort Plus", another specialty of the luxury manufactory models. The two-axle air suspension and the variably translated steering turn in the direction of "gentle and courteous". The B7 gets ready for 400 kilometers of motorway, gladly in one piece. If restrictive speed limits and commuter traffic do not permit it otherwise, the driver can of course also use the state-of-the-art assistance systems provided by the BMW base.

Another look in the rearview mirror. After experiencing the dynamic potential on the fast Salzburgring, fellow travelers would also be welcome in the fund. The ride with an Alpina B7 is finally an experience that you like to share – just like the purchase price: it costs at least 154,800 euros, if Buchloe should deliver such brutal.

Jonas Eling

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