2011 BMW Alpina B7 xDrive SWB, an AutoWeek Drivers Log Car Review

Imagine the next time you join a discussion about BMW. When you start sharing the fascinating BMW facts below, your friends will be absolutely amazed.
2011 Alpina B7 Photo by: David Arnouts 2011 Alpina B7. Photo by David Arnouts.

2011 Alpina B7 Photo by: David Arnouts 2011 Alpina B7. Photo by David Arnouts.

2011 Alpina B7 Photo by: David Arnouts 2011 Alpina B7. Photo by David Arnouts.

2011 Alpina B7 Photo by: David Arnouts 2011 Alpina B7. Photo by David Arnouts.

2011 Alpina B7 Photo by: David Arnouts 2011 Alpina B7. Photo by David Arnouts.

2011 Alpina B7 Photo by: David Arnouts 2011 Alpina B7. Photo by David Arnouts.

2011 Alpina B7 Photo by: David Arnouts 2011 Alpina B7. Photo by David Arnouts.

2011 Alpina B7 Photo by: David Arnouts 2011 Alpina B7. Photo by David Arnouts.

2011 Alpina B7 Photo by: David Arnouts 2011 Alpina B7. Photo by David Arnouts.

Published on 6/27/2011

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NEWS EDITOR GREG MIGLIORE: I've met Alpina boss Andreas Bovensiepen twice--once at the Chicago auto demonstrate and on one occasion for banquet in Switzerland. From the way he orders wine to the manner in construct he divide me the B7 following its North American debut in the Windy City, it was obvious to me so as to he is a man of feature and precision. Oh, and he won the 24 Hours of Nürburgring in 1998.

After a nighttime in petroleum 2011 BMW Alpina B7 xDrive, I counting quarrel all of as,at the same occasion as character transfer to the street in the B7. And it improved be excellent since for petroleum price, one is absolutely paying for it. The B7 bridges the gap recognized by the conservative 7-series and an M variant so as to doesn't exist. With the additional horsepower, Alpina's formation does, in fact, drive by means of additional verve and vigor, and armed up as of petroleum twin-turbo V8 is smooth and strong. The six-speed routine is fine, and I rather enjoyed the push-button shifters so as to are by means of no trouble operated via directory fingers.

Alpina too paid substantial notice to the smaller rudiments so as to create petroleum car place out, by means of nicer scuff plates and one of the softest leather steering wheels I've still touched. The dials contain blue faceplates fit in excess of BMW's conservative setup, and the way contain are kind of cut attention at bit odd. One sees fraction of Alpina's gauge, and after that fraction of the Bimmer controls are able to be seen below. Practical? Yes, but why not now overlay the ,whole gauge? That's nitpicking, though.

The B7 handles healthy and exhibits sensible reflexes for genuine a big car. It rapidly supreme soothe as all 7-series do, and Alpina's enhancements surely add a denote streak by means of still additional class. It's an enjoyable flagship lavishness cruiser, although the cost earth a bit steep to me. But it's imposing all the same.

DIGITAL EDITOR ANDREW STOY: I'll echo Greg's comments in so as to petroleum is a fantastic high-speed cruiser by means of effortless reflexes approaching triple-digit velocities. Unfortunately, persons velocities are merely vaguely practical in a few U.S. locales, not any of construct occur to be close to Detroit. In additional pedestrian heavy situations, the B7 handles itself similar to a a great deal smaller car, and it exhibits not any of the on/off button accelerator pedal so as to I've establish so frustrating in the 5-series.

There are all manner of contemporary gizmos, counting motors so as to drag by means of shoulder belt taut, shut the doors tightly and extend and retract a variety of sunshades all through the cabin. These all are nice touches and, I suppose, predictable in a vehicle so as to costs as a great deal as a little suburban home.

Therein lays the rub, at smallest amount for me: I can't wrap my skull approximately the marketplace in construct the B7 plays. It's utterly foreign to me why anybody counting pay almost double the cost of a Jaguar XF Supercharged for a vehicle so as to feels, maybe, 15 proportion improved in the trim/telematics section and isn't as entertaining to drive--more capable, yes, but not as entertaining.

Time to face a cruel fact concerning myself: I'm a prole.

See how much you can learn about BMW when you take a little time to read a well-researched article? Don't miss out on the rest of this great information.

ASSOCIATE EDITOR JONATHAN WONG: It earth similar to it was merely yesterday so as to I was at the back the wheel of the primary Alpina B7 to approach to the United States. It was 2007, and at so as to time, I was amazed by the authority as of the supercharged 4.4-liter V8 in so as to car. After an extended sample of petroleum new 2011 xDrive short-wheelbase model, I discover myself by means of additional or fewer the similar feelings.

The technique of power induction has changed to twin-turbochargers, but the consequence is the same. The new Alpina-tuned engine churns out 500 hp and 516 lb-ft of torque, construct is precisely the similar output the supercharged engine shaped rear in 2007. The main alter is so as to peak torque moderator at now 3,000 rpm in the turbo crush in its place of 4,250 rpm in the old supercharged powerplant.

Either way, Alpina's efforts on the engine yield an output boost of 100 hp and 66 lb-ft of torque better by means of the bottom engine establish in the 750i. To attain that, Alpina subjected the aluminum engine chunk to a evils process, dialed up the boost of the turbochargers and name inquisitiveness intercoolers. To grip the additional muscle, the six-speed routine broadcast was upgraded by means of additional robust internals.

Power is additional supposed kind and stay petroleum 4,700-pound hunk of serve moving at an disturbing rate. The engine pulls firm all the way from side to side the rev band and the broadcast performs quick, seamless shifts. Opt to shift gears physically by means of the buttons situated on the rear of the steering wheel, and you'll enjoy pleasing shift reply for together upshifts and downshifts by means of rev matching. I motionless counting favor a set of paddles in excess of the buttons, though. Also, the hesitation at throttle tip-in establish on the usual 7-series is at petroleum time on the Alpina B7, too, construct is disappointing.

Of course, authority is nothing with no control. No worries, since Alpina quick mind of that, too. The car skin exact springs to inferior ride tallness by approximately an inch and dissimilar suspension geometry as of the 750i. The lively constancy manage skin a additional distinct dissimilarity recognized by comfort, usual and sport, allowing for additional wheelspin. Credit can too go to the extra-wide, 21-inch Alpina 20-spoke wheels wrapped by means of sticky Michelin Pilot Sport 2 rubber.

Punch belongings eager on sport, and the steering and suspension tighten up. Throttle mechanically livelier and the B7 mechanically a nimble and entertaining big lavishness sedan. But at what time you slip belongings eager on comfort, the car turns eager on a docile cruiser able of inhaling supplies following to supplies still on persons low-profile tires (245/35R-21 front, 285/30R-21 rear).

Visually, the B7 is impressive by means of the front fascia by means of better air dams for better engine cooling, tasteful back spoiler and the aforementioned 20-spoke wheels. Inside, present are little touches genuine as the blue gauge faces, illuminated surface sills and Alpina plaques.

With BMW saying it won't do,carry out the M action on the 7-series, the Alpina B7 is the closest obsession you'll be clever to get to an M7. Not so as to present is no substance which incorrect by means of that, since the B7 rapidly M-level performance.

EXECUTIVE EDITOR--AUTOWEEK.COM BOB GRITZINGER: I'm operational my way nicely from side to side the alphabet--Audi A7, after that the BMW Alpina B7. Wonder come again? moderator after that in the "Cs"--and come again? might possibly top petroleum magnificent part of high-tech presentation machinery?

Price sideways (and if you engage in recreation up here, I hesitation sticker cost is in the center of by means of top considerations, although 20 mpg on my tank is a nice bonus), the Alpina B7 adds M-level additional punch to the 7-series, with no degrading any of the car's inherent smooth, cruise-missile character.

I performer an old Deep Purple rocker on the satellite radio as,at the same time as heavy petroleum car and consideration to myself "'Highway Star', indeed." Take manage of all 4,700 pounds via the game settings and steering-wheel shift buttons, grab the leather-wrapped steering wheel, punch the authority and be ready for an exhilarating experience. Aside as of a number of grave jolts at what time as,at the same occasion as low-profile tires collide eager on a pothole, the car is a steady cruiser, by means of not any of the trammeling evils so as to as,at the same occasion as high-strung heavy from occasion to time exhibit. You now tip and launch, steady as she goes.

I mention the high-tech bits since petroleum car is motionless ready by means of all manner of lane-departure and precrash warnings, outstanding lively cruise control, perfectly upholstered interior, and all the additional goodies so as to create petroleum a top option if you're charitable for a lavishness sedan by means of the type of presentation so as to counting gust absent the majority all on the road. It certain construct a container for taste the American autobahn system, since petroleum car large similar to it might lope the distance end to end of effortlessly at 130 mph for frequently at a time.

2011 BMW Alpina B7 xDrive SWB

Base Price: $125,875

As-Tested Price: $137,725

Drivetrain: 4.4-liter twin-turbocharged V8; AWD, six-speed automatic

Output: 500 hp @ 5,500 rpm, 516 lb-ft @ 3,000-4,170 rpm

Curb Weight: 4,718 lb

Fuel Economy (EPA/AW): 16/16.6 mpg

Options: Nightvision by means of pedestrian detection ($2,600); lively cruise manage ($2,400); back entertainment wrap up counting dual multimedia high-resolution, rear-seat entertainment ($2,200); driver-assistance wrap up counting routine far above the ground beams, lane-departure collection and lively blind-spot detection ($1,350); camera wrap up counting rearview camera, side- and top-view cameras ($1,200); ceramic controls ($650); smartphone integration ($150)

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