- 171 mph and 0-60 in 4.8 seconds from effortless 700 Nm (516 b ft) of torque
- Sublime combination of performance, luxury, on-road comfort and driving pleasure
- £62,000 with standard AWD calibrated for fast, fun driving with maximum grip
Nottingham – ALPINA’s multi-talented new D5 S All-Wheel-Drive is now available in the UK, bringing an unrivalled combination of pace, comfort, bespoke engineering, low CO2 and exceptional fuel economy. The German vehicle manufacturer’s latest high-performance diesel continues a run of new models that most recently saw the UK launch of the astonishing 200 mph B5 Bi-Turbo, described by reviewers as amongst the world’s most impressive high-performance luxury cars.
By combining much of the bespoke engineering and interior detail developed for its B5 Bi-Turbo sister with the company’s high-efficiency twin-turbo straight six diesel, ALPINA has created a car that can cruise effortlessly at its 171 mph maximum, sprint to 60 mph in 4.8 seconds and still deliver 46.3 mpg with CO2 emissions or just 161 g/km, making it uniquely attractive to company car drivers.
The new ALPINA D5 S is an evolution of the latest (G30 generation) BMW 5-Series, which provides the company with a state-of-the-art, high-technology development platform. To help achieve this impressive combination of performance, comfort and driving dynamics, ALPINA’s 70-strong engineering team received exceptional access to BMW design data and technical facilities as part of a relationship that reaches back to 1964, when BMW endorsed the quality of ALPINA products by awarding the full factory warranty to all BMW ALPINA vehicles. Today, all new ALPINAs carry a BMW-endorsed three year / 120,000 mile warranty.
“ALPINAs are subtle cars for knowledgeable enthusiasts who value the tremendous depth and breadth of talent that can only be achieved by total attention to detail,” explains ALPINA GB’s Jonathan Noy. “By offering a very small number of technical specifications, every calibration and interaction can be optimised, from suspension geometry to engine breathing. The result is a no-compromise combination of abilities, from sublime comfort in the new ALPINA Comfort Plus mode to sportscar agility and immense, effortless performance.”
700 Nm (516 lb ft) from 1750 – 2500 rpm
326 hp (240 hp) from 4000 – 4600 rpm
The heart of the UK-specification ALPINA D5 S is a heavily revised version of BMW’s award-winning diesel straight six. ALPINA’s powertrain specialists have replaced the standard single TwinPower turbocharger with two small, variable geometry turbochargers to provide a significantly faster response. These are fed from larger intake ducts with optimised radii, allowing the engine to breathe more freely by reducing induction air pressure losses by up to 30 percent compared with the standard system. A 20 percent larger intercooler with flow-optimised aluminium ducting increases the density of the fuel / air mixture to further increase engine output.
Although optimised for fast road driving rather than track use, ALPINA cars are engineered to provide consistent performance and high reliability when driven hard for long periods. Managing heat is critical to ensuring consistent responses, low emissions and long-term durability. An additional radiator in the engine cooling circuit is mounted behind the bespoke front spoiler, which also directs air to the new, high-flow oil cooler. Control is provided by a dedicated thermal systems control unit that uses information from the vehicle’s databus to optimise powertrain temperatures and to reduce parasitic loading on the engine by momentarily switching off the fan when maximum acceleration is required.
ALPINA has paid equal attention to the hot side of the engine, specifying a bespoke, free-flow exhaust manifold manufactured from high carbon steel with a cobalt addition to provide very high temperature resistance. The bespoke look and feel of the car is enhanced by a four-outlet, light weight stainless steel sports exhaust system that has been tuned to reduce back pressure as well as providing a choice of two driver-selectable, bass-focussed sounds.
The eight speed transmission has been developed in partnership with ZF to provide a very fast shift speed while ensuring durability even with liberal use of the engine’s immense torque. Around 20 percent of the system is bespoke, developed with ZF specifically for ALPINA. In Manual mode, the driver can take complete control of the transmission using the unique ALPINA Switch-Tronic buttons on the back of the steering wheel for intuitive fingertip control. The driveshafts and differential are also reinforced.
The same philosophy has been applied to the braking system. The rear brakes are larger than the front’s because they receive less cooling air, so need a larger surface area to shed heat. The increased surface area also allows them to share more of the braking load. ALPINA says their system provides greater retardation and resistance to fade than many equivalent ceramic systems, with excellent consistency and feel across a wider range of temperatures.
Combining driving pleasure with outstanding comfort
The result of thousands of hours of development at ALPINA’s R&D centre and on roads from Death Valley to the Arctic Circle, the new D5 S provides a combination of comfort, performance and driving pleasure that the manufacturer believes is unrivalled. “ALPINA’s dynamics specialists have spent months honing the chassis, not hurling it around a race track but simply driving as customers will, on roads, enjoying every mile however fast or slow,” says Noy. “The result is pin-sharp dynamics combined with remarkable ride quality.”
ALPINA’s immense attention to detail is illustrated by the use of bespoke front wishbones, specified to provide one degree of negative camber to improve turn-in and steering feel, which is further enhanced by new ALPINA control software for the electric assistance. Shorter, stiffer springs sharpen body control while also lowering the centre of gravity and enhancing aerodynamics. Bespoke adaptive dampers offer drivers a choice of settings including a new Comfort Plus mode developed by ALPINA to provide limousine levels of ride comfort. Wheels are ALPINA’s new light-weight 20” forged alloys (which between them save 15 kg) shod with specially-developed ‘ALP’ labelled Pirelli P-Zero tyres as first seen on the B5 Bi-Turbo.
Power is delivered to the road by BMW’s All Wheel Drive system, optimised to give the driver-orientated feel required by ALPINA owners. The system continuously monitors a wide range of inputs, including steering angle, lateral acceleration, yaw angle and speed, allowing up to 90 percent of the torque to be sent to the rear wheels.
Also optional is the Active Rear Steering system first seen on the B5 Bi-Turbo and described by reviewers as possibly the best ARS system currently in production. On the D5 S, the ALPINA-calibrated system enhances manoeuvrability, stability and steering response by turning the rear wheels up to 2.5 degrees the opposite way to the front wheels at low speeds, and the same way at higher speeds. Customers can also specify active roll stabilisation (Dynamic Drive), which employs a new generation of high-speed electric actuators to optimise roll stiffness, improving both dynamics and ride quality.
Aerodynamics have been optimised in BMW’s wind tunnel, with a unique ALPINA front spoiler that substantially increase airflow through the uprated cooling system and a new rear spoiler to reduce high-speed lift.
Luxurious, hand-crafted interiors
Inside, the new D5 S can be specified with an almost limitless range of options and leather trims, individually-crafted in ALPINA’s saddlery. Standard equipment on UK-market cars includes soft Nappa leather and LED digital instruments in a unique ALPINA Blue design with a central speed readout and D5 S model inscription. Door sills are accented by ALPINA Blue illumination of the model inscriptions. The sports steering wheel is hand-finished in Lavalina leather with blue and green signature stitching to provide a luxurious feel while retaining the firm rim preferred by skilled drivers.
Unique ALPINA body colours include ALPINA Blue or ALPINA Green, complementing the full range of BMW and BMW Individual finishes, all of which can be specified with ALPINA’s iconic Deco-Set along the sides and on the front spoiler. The interior of each car is finished with a unique, numbered production plaque on the centre console. Fewer than 100 D5 S Saloons (the D5 S Touring is not available in the UK) are expected to be available to UK customers over the life of the model.
Half a century of bespoke cars
ALPINA Burkard Bovensiepen KG was established on the 1st of January 1965 in Kaufbeuren. Two years later it adopted the now-famous badge featuring a twin-choke downdraught carburettor and a crankshaft on a shield; a proud symbol of the company’s dedication to superb engineering.
Although today the company is focussed largely on road cars, its ethos has been formed by decades of racing success with a driver roster that includes Derek Bell, James Hunt, Jacky Ickx, Niki Lauda, Brian Muir and Hans Stuck. Throughout this time, the close relationship with BMW was developing, with factory support for road car development and collaboration in motorsport that included commissioning ALPINA to develop the light weight race car that became the now-legendary BMW 3.0 CSL.
Today, ALPINA is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of high-performance luxury automobiles, selling on every continent yet still in numbers small enough to allow each car to be bespoke. Fewer than 100 cars a year are sold in the UK.
“ALPINA is a company that creates subtly stylish, very high-performance cars that can be tailored to each customer’s personal requirements, yet offer the long-term comfort and durability required for enthusiastic daily use,” comments CEO Andreas Bovensiepen, son of the company’s founder Burkard Bovensiepen. “We have a unique philosophy and a commitment to engineering excellence that we intend to maintain and build on as our company develops into the future.”
Watch the new ALPINA D5 S being driven on spectacular roads: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yboWZxaGz4o
Richard Gotch at Market Engineering
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