The Alpina B7 is not your average BMW 7 Series. It rolls off the same line as the regular 7, but Alpina re-engineers a good chunk of it to create a car that's more luxurious, more powerful -- and more expensive. And the 2020 Alpina B7, announced ahead of its actual debut here at the Geneva Motor Show, keeps that tradition alive as it enters its third generation of US sales.
The 2020 Alpina B7 is the sixth generation of the automaker's hopped-up flagship par excellence. At the heart of the matter is an Alpina-massaged 4.4-liter twin-turbo V8. New engine management software and a host of other new parts result in an output of 600 horsepower and 590 pound-feet of torque. Its eight-speed automatic has been beefed up to handle the extra output, too.
Despite being a barge, its performance figures are damned impressive. It'll hit 60 miles per hour from a standstill in just 3.5 seconds, 0.1 seconds quicker than before. Given enough asphalt, this super sedan won't stop until it crests 205 mph, 11 mph more than the last generation. And with a dual-mode Alpina exhaust on tap, it can be silent or violent the whole way there.
Sporty doesn't always mean uncomfortable, though. The Alpina B7 has standard air suspension and rear-axle steering to keep handling tight without making the ride utterly exasperating. It also packs BMW's Road Preview system, which uses camera and navigation data to set up the suspension to handle bumps and other road annoyances. The system can lower the ride height by 0.6 inches at high speeds, or it can raise the car 0.8 inches to improve ground clearance.
The Alpina's trademark wheels are back for 2020, measuring 20 inches in diameter, although 21-inchers are also available. Behind those wheels are upgraded brakes, measuring 15.55 inches in the front and 15.67 inches in the rear. To further differentiate itself from the regular 7 Series, the B7 has a new front bumper, a new rear spoiler and a handful of paint colors unique to the B7.
The interior is dressed to the nines. Standard equipment includes a Nappa leather interior, a leather instrument panel, ceramic touches on the controls and soft-close doors. The steering wheel has blue and green stitching, while the doorsills have blue embedded lighting and a plaque stating its place in the production queue. Heck, even the gauge cluster has a unique Alpina design. New shields and insulation points make the interior even quieter than before.
Of course, the B7 is a pricey proposition. When it goes on sale in the third quarter of 2019, it'll command $142,695 including destination, a far cry from the 7 Series' base price of $87,445.