Alpina B3 GT Debuts As The Thinking Man’s BMW M3

The B3 GT is offered in both Sedan and Touring guises, with Alpina also offering a Gran Coupe B4 GT.  

Hot on the heels BMW refreshing its own top-flight M3 and M4, Alpina has since brought along their own updated versions of its B3 sedan and Touring, as well as B4 Gran Coupe. Now sporting the GT suffix, these thinking man’s performance Bavarian ‘bahnstormers has been revamped with a healthy power bump and some chassis upgrades, before being finished off with a couple of subtle styling tweaks. 

Starting first here with the changes under the hood, tweaks to the ECU mapping has saw Alpina eke out another 35 PS from the existing the S58 twin-turbocharged 3.0-litre straight-six found in the outgoing B3 and B4s. Peak power in these revised GTs is therefore now rated at a more-than-healthy 529 PS (which is incidentally very conveniently just 1 PS down from what BMW quotes for the same power plant found in its recently revised M3 and M4 pair). 

In any case, these Alpinas’ 730 Nm of torque (same as before) is still to be a boat-load more than the 650 Nm mustered by its M-badged equivalents. All that twist is to be transferred to all four wheels via an 8-speed ZF-sourced automatic gearbox. 


Alpina currently claims that the power bump has been instrumental in slashing the century sprint times of the GTs by 0.2 seconds across the board from its outgoing iterations, with the B3 GT sedan’s 3.4 second time in particular to now actually be a tenth quicker than BMW’s M3 Competition xDrive. 

The Buchloe-based tuning firm has further went onto state that this time advantage relative the old B cars then grows to as much as a full second by the time the new trio touches 200 km/h, with the aforementioned sedan even topping out 3 km/h higher than before at 308 km/h. 

Discussing chassis upgrades now, all GTs net stiffer damper mounts, a reinforced bulkhead for more precise steering and a thicker rear anti-roll bar. Spring rates have also been recalibrated for better ride comfort, while the B4 Gran Coupe specifically further adds additional anti-roll bar reinforcements, as well as tweaks to its steering and electronically-controlled rear LSD. 

As for the exterior alterations, a set of motorsport-style canards has appeared on the front bumper of these GTs to complement the new front splitter, while the rear has gained a subtle gloss black diffuser and similarly dark-coloured tailpipes. The B3 sedan and Touring has since also been graced with the option of 20-inch forged Alpina alloys that were previously reserved only for the B4, while the B4 itself inherits the facelifted M4’s updated headlights and the trick 3D rear lights originally seen on the CSL. 

Now it is probably worth highlighting here on the topic of aesthetics that as B3 GT based on the BMW 3-Series, it therefore is really the only factory way to procure an M3 without its polarising shnoz. Those who nevertheless desires the lung-sized kidney grilles on a four-door Alpina could always still go with the B4 GT Gran Coupe. 

Among the notable interior accoutrements that sets these B3 and B4 GTs apart from its M-equivalents are bronze stitching on the upholstery and similarly bronze paddle shifters. There is the typical Alpina plaque too on the centre console showcasing the model number, with some extra bits of black leather in discreet spaces like the luggage compartments to further up the luxury factor that little bit more. 

These Alpinas are unfortunately slated as European exclusives for now, with sales to begin in Germany come November. The B3 GT sedan and Touring is starts from €101,700 (RM 520,000) and €102,900 (RM 526,000) respectively over there, with the B4 GT Gran Coupe being the most expensive at €105,100 (RM 537,000).

Joshua Chin

Automotive journalist. Professional work on and Personal writing found at Instagram: @driveeveryday

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