BMW Alpina Roadster V8

Alpina Roadsters were rare as hens' teeth, but shouldn't be overlooked if one comes up on the secondhand market

Three years ago, average Z8 values were drifting below the £50,000 mark, but since then the market has really taken off and today a good, low-mileage Z8 commands a price just north of £100K. For the ultra-rare Alpina Roadster version it’s even higher, a £10K premium not being unusual.

Of the 555 Alpina Roadsters produced in 2002-3, 444 went to the US, six to Canada and the remaining 105 to various other countries around the world, but mainly Japan. None, however, was sold in the UK and all were left-hand drive.

Subscribe to evo magazine

Subscribe today to have every issue of evo delivered straight to you. You'll SAVE 39% on the shop price, and get evo for its original cover price for a whole year!

This car is apparently the only BMW Alpina Roadster V8 in the UK, its current owner having imported it from the US around 12 months ago. Its total mileage now stands at 3600 and, as you’d expect, the car is like new.

Alpina Roadsters came with a very different specification to regular BMW Z8s, the most notable change being the 375bhp Alpina 4.8-litre V8 taking the place of the standard car’s 400bhp V8, as the ZF automatic gearbox wasn’t compatible with the high-revving M5 engine. Alpina Roadsters have softer springs too, while the 20in wheels are a unique Alpina design, fitted here with Michelin Pilot Sport 2 tyres (regular Z8s came with run-flats).

Advertisement
Advertisement - Article continues below

Even after driving this Alpina briefly, it’s obvious it has a much more relaxed character than the standard car. The auto works beautifully and the ride is good and not too wallowy, but I really missed the bite of the snarling M5 engine, even if the standard Z8 manual gearbox was never the greatest. Vendor Clive Sutton expects this car will most likely find a home outside the UK. I can understand why.    

With thanks to vendor: Clive Sutton, London (0207 483 6500, www.clivesutton.co.uk)

test

• Exterior

Beautifully presented; unmarked, deep-gloss black paintwork. No scuffs to the Alpina wheels, tyre wear minimal

• Interior

Unmarked black leather interior with those lovely blue Alpina dials

Advertisement - Article continues below

• Mechanicals

Virtually as new, and just serviced too

• Should i buy it?

If you’re looking for one of these, you won’t find a better one anywhere

• FOR: It’s the only one available in the UK

• AGAINST: Very different to the regular Z8, and not necessarily for the better either

Specifications

Price£116,950
Year2003
EngineV8, 4837cc  
Max power375bhp @ 5800rpm
Max torque383lb ft @ 3800rpm
0-60mph5.0sec (claimed)
Top speed161mph (limited)
Advertisement
Advertisement

Most Popular

Visit/features/202640/bmw-m4-competition-vs-mercedes-amg-c63-s-coupe-german-coupe-twin-test
Features

BMW M4 Competition vs Mercedes-AMG C63 S Coupe - German coupe twin test

The F82 BMW M4 is about to be put out to pasture, so does AMG’s recently fettled C63 S Coupe finally have its number?
18 May 2020
Visit/jaguar/202404/jaguar-project-8-evo-reader-experience
Advertisement Feature

Jaguar Project 8 evo reader experience

The Jaguar Project 8 is a 200mph marvel of engineering designed with one purpose in mind: to deliver the thrill of driving. We put some lucky evo read…
14 Apr 2020
Visit/features/18127/the-best-six-cylinder-engines-ever-we-pick-our-favourites
Features

The best six-cylinder engines ever – we pick our favourites

Six-cylinder engines can be found in cars of all kinds, good and bad. We collate the very best
13 May 2020
Visit/porsche/911/202636/porsche-911-carrera-to-be-turbo-only-as-manuals-stay
Porsche 911

Porsche 911 Carrera to be turbo only, as manuals stay

Porsche confirms the 911 Carrera won’t be available with a naturally aspirated engine again, but manuals stay. For now
17 May 2020