We all know that BMW has its M division for all the factory-ready, high-horsepower production vehicles across most of their lineup. You can even get M-inspired addons and trims for most of BMW's vehicles, adding more sporting exteriors and uprated components. While that's good and all for most enthusiasts, there are those who want something a little more unique and luxurious, without missing out on performance.
Alpina and BMW almost go hand-in-hand, with much of the processes for building their unique takes on select BMW models sharing the same production lines and resources. Where the difference lies is in the hand-crafted identity of Alpina, combining stunning and comfortable interiors with serious performance that isn't reserved for the hardcore.
Gallery: Alpina boss shows off the XB7 and B3
Alpina's latest models were showcased through a thirty-minute live stream on their YouTube channel. On display are the company's XB7 and B3 Touring, essentially unique and hand-made upgraded versions of the X7 and 3 Series Touring. While we've seen the B3 in all its forms for quite a while now, it's the XB7 that we're more interested in. Both cars get an in-depth overview thanks to Alpina CEO and owner Andreas Bovensiepen, as he takes us through the unique features and performance numbers for both vehicles. As a bonus, a run around a race track allows for some quick driving impressions.
As with every Alpina, signature colours, blue calipers, huge multi-spoke wheels, tastefully applied aero bits, and aurally satisfying exhaust systems are the norm. The interiors are significantly upgraded with untreated leather in most places, and updated trim to remind you how special an Alpina can be. Additionally, numbered production plaques and integrated logos can be found in every Alpina.
Performance numbers are impressive, especially for the XB7 and in the absence of a real M version for BMW's 7-seater, with a 4.4-litre bi-turbo V8 that delivers 621 bhp (475 kW) and 590 lb-ft (800 Nm) of torque. A revised 8-speed transmission developed by Alpina keeps up with the massive amount of torque. The B3 is the fastest yet, with the 3.0-litre bi-turbo creating 462 bhp (340 kW) and 516 lb-ft (700 Nm) of torque.