If you are not familiar with Alpina, you should be, and for several reasons. Alpina is pretty much BMW’s in-house tuner rather than aftermarket one, as many of its products roll out from the same assembly lines as Beemer’s. But don’t view it as in charge of putting exaggerated aero bits and stuffing oversized and overworked turbochargers to regular Munich’s models. No, its approach is a gentleman like, discreet and sophisticated, while never even moderately excessive. Suitable for the people with refined palate who appreciate the notion of being able to travel fast, yet completely resenting any ostentatious behavior. That would make new 2018 BMW Alpina B5 Biturbo most dignified mean of exploiting Autobahn’s lacks of the speed restriction. Along with B7 Biturbo off course.
How to recognize Alpina anyway? The most obvious answer would be to look for lettering and in case of B5, you’ll find one on the lowest part of the front bumper and below BMW’s badge on the tail. Yet, the most recognizable thing of any Alpina are neat alloys consisted of twenty very thin spokes with tuner’s badge at the center. Besides mentioned 20-inch sized wheels, we also have unpretentious deck lid spoiler and quad exhausts with round tips. That’s it. It hasn’t even used sportier front bumper from M550i model, let alone glitzy stuff from full M model. As for the interior? It speaks a similar story, though it features more of unique touches.
First things you will notice are Alpina’s badge on the steering wheel and instrument cluster painted in blue. Then you may notice the tiny logo on the dash veneer and carpets, branded and illuminated door sills, and tile on the lower console with engraved car’s particular production number. Finally, you may acknowledge that whole leather upholstery and cabin’s trimming along with stitching is actually unique. There is nothing of sporty flavor, just pure luxury with the softest leather and real wood accents.
2018 BMW ALPINA B5 BITURBO ENGINE AND SPECS
Whether you excepted it or not, there is absolutely nothing subdued in the engine department. B5 use twin-turbo 4.4-liter V8 along with xDrive, as does M550i and M5, while it boosts 608 hp. That is 8 hp above M5 model, but it gets even crazier with torque.
Available 590 lb-ft of twist is significantly above M5’s number and that is by almost 40 lb-ft, which you’ll feel each time when you slam the right pedal. B5 takes 3.5 seconds to 60 mph, which is two-tenths behind M5, but the top speed of 205 mph tops it by big 16 mph. B5 also features specially tweaked Bilstein dampers, while above-mentioned alloys save whole 32 pounds from weight figures.
POLITE AND SMOOTH
Still, directly comparing B5 and M5 is wrongful doing. There is nothing animalistic and brutal in that raw sense with any Alpina, while for any M letter those are mandatory flavors. B5 uses the same ZF’s 8-speed automatic, but its one doesn’t lock the torque converter. Smooth is the name of the game here, as all shifts are never abrupt but still quick, while transmission also uses GPS data for curve prediction and suits the timing of the gear change accordingly. Further more, sound levels are down and comfort is evidently prioritized over harsh cornering. Yet, do know that fine balance is struck in the handling department. As much as it is pampering, B5 also tackles curves with great dignity and poise. Sharper than regular 5 Series? Yes. But always ultimately polite.
2018 BMW ALPINA B5 BITURBO RELEASE DATE AND PRICE
Prepare to be disappointed. There is no release date for the US now, neither it will be tomorrow. That means if you badly want an Alpina you can go for B7 or B6 model, or relocate to Europe and get a B5 for around $112k. You can even go with a station wagon, but it hurts acceleration time by two-tenths or you can even pick D5 diesel model, though it is a significantly slower. As you see, 2018 BMW Alpina B5 Biturbo is a steep financial deal, more than ten grand above M5, but minority between us with highly refined and genteel characters might cherish every single aspect of it.