Enthusiasts have pined for BMW to produce an M variant of the 7-Series for years. It hasn’t happened yet, although recently we heard that it may finally become a reality thanks to demand in China and in the United States.
About time! For years, BMW has satiated the desire for a more sporting 7-Series model through Alpina. Alpina is a company primarily focused on tuning BMWs, and it has extensive manufacturer support.
For instance, Alpina vehicles are manufactured on the same assembly line as their standard counterparts. And, in the B7 the 4.4-liter twin-turbocharged V-8 engine is built at Alpina’s facility and then sent to BMW.
So rather than just leave the 7-Series without a sporting model, BMW’s long-standing partnership with Alpina brings the B7 directly into dealers. For 2013 the 7-Series has been updated, and Alpina has followed suit with the B7. The car’s 4.4-liter V-8 has been bumped up to 540 horsepower and 538 pound feet of torque.
Those figures are up by 40 hp and 22 lb-ft over last year’s numbers. The numbers result in a 4.3 to 4.4 second dash. Why the 0.1 difference? Because the car is available with either rear- or all-wheel drive, and in short and long wheelbase configurations.
Even more impressive is the 2013 model’s top speed of 194 mph, up 19 from last year’s 175 mph. BMW’s eight-speed automatic transmission does duty for 2013. The Alpina B7’s exterior is dominated by the changes made to the standard model for 2013 – a redesigned “eyebrow” headlamps and an enlarged signature kidney grille. 20-spoke 21-inch wheels are standard.
The Alpina B7 makes its launch at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance in August. It starts off at $127,600 for the RWD standard wheelbase, going up to $134,500 for the top-shelf all-wheel drive model. Why do we need an M7 again?