German BMW specialist Alpina looks set to continue the expansion of its range by adding yet another new model line. To join the recently revealed XB7 SUV, Alpine is turning its attention to the 8-series Gran Coupe to create a new flagship model likely to take the B8 name. This move would reprise a nomenclature made infamous by the E36-based B8 4.6.
Unlike that model, which shoehorned in a 4.6-litre version of BMW’s period V8 engine into a compact E36 Coupe body shell, the new B8 will be a modest divergence from the current BMW range. We expect it to offer a suite of subtle changes to a BMW M850i package underneath.
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Using Alpine’s new behemoth, the XB7, as a reference, we suspect this new B8 Gran Coupe could feature the same 613bhp version of the 4.4-litre twin-turbocharged V8 engine that’s found across BMW’s upper model range. This power figure is a 90bhp jump on the standard powertrain and only 4bhp down on BMW’s own M8 Competition Gran Coupe. In the XB7 peak torque is also up to 590lb ft and is liberally spread across the rev band between 2000 and 5000rpm.
These power and torque increases are accounted for by extra cooling hardware in the form of two extra water-to-air charge coolers and improved intercoolers, as well as a new exhaust system finished with Alpina’s typical four-oval tips on the XB7, we expect the B8 to feature similar hardware upgrades.
As is typical in Alpina models, the chassis is likely to have a greater emphasis on its GT capability than on-track performance, opening up some critical space between it and the M8 Competition Gran Coupe.
The rest of the aesthetic package as seen on this prototype is also based on the M Performance 8-series Gran Coupe body shell, sharing its more aggressive bumpers with the M850i. Other typical Alpina elements like the small lip spoiler, Alpine motif on the front bumper and delicate multi-spoke wheels round out the exterior changes.
While the new model seen here is an American-spec prototype, we expect the new B8 Gran Coupe to arrive in the UK in the coming months as a left-field alternative to the Mercedes-AMG GT63 S, Audi RS7 and Porsche Panamera Turbo S.