Tokyo 2011: Alpina B6 Bi-Turbo, B3 GT3 Unveiled
It may yet be some time before the next-generation BMW M6 arrives on the scene, but German BMW tuner Alpina may have given us the next best thing when the firm unveiled its B6 Bi-Turbo convertible at this year's Frankfurt show. Today, Alpina debuted the coupe version of that car at the 2011 Tokyo Motor Show, along with a limited-edition B3 GT3 - not based on the new 2012 3 Series like you might expect, but rather a race car tribute built around the previous-gen E92 model.
The B6 Bi-Turbo Coupe, much like its drop-top sister car, is powered by a version of the standard 650i's twin-turbo 4.4-liter V-8 massaged to the tune of 540 hp and 516 lb-ft of torque. To achieve this, Alpina upsized the exhaust turbines of the turbochargers to deliver more power over a broad rpm range. The B6 puts that power down to the pavement with the help of an eight-speed Switch-Tronic automatic transmission designed by ZF. This gearbox was designed for comfortable cruising, but can also bang out crisp shifts when switched to Sport Shift Mode. Alpina claims the whole package is good for zero to 62 mph in 4.4 seconds and a top speed of 197 mph.
The other Alpina making its debut in Japan is the B3 GT3, a limited-edition 3 Series variant commemorating Alpina's return to motorsports and recent win in the German GT3 Series. You might think Alpina would want to celebrate its victory by releasing a special version of the car it won with, the B6 GT3, but the firm instead decided to outfit 99 previous-generation 3 Series models with racing-inspired goodies. The B3 GT3 gets the same unique green-and-blue paint scheme used for the brand's racing livery, along with the tuner's characteristic multi-spoke alloy wheels. The familiar twin-turbo 3.0-liter I-6 found in the standard 335i is tuned to 408 hp and 398 lb-ft of torque in the B3 GT3. A six-speed automatic transmission transmits that power, while upgraded brakes help stop the race car look-alike. The interior is outfitted with Recaro front bucket seats and an Alcantara-upholstered sport steering wheel. Alpina claims the car can hit a top speed of 186 mph, and can accelerate to 62 mph from a standstill in 4.6 seconds.
For the complete story on the 2011 Tokyo Motor Show, be sure to click over to Automobile's Tokyo Motor Show home page, with all the latest photos, information, and much more on all things Tokyo.