Rare Rides: The Special 1988 Alpina B7S Turbo Coupe in Tartan Plaid

Corey Lewis
by Corey Lewis
rare rides the special 1988 alpina b7s turbo coupe in tartan plaid

The glorious green Alpina coupe before your eyes nets three firsts for the Rare Rides series. It’s the first coupe coated in any shade of green paint, the first BMW, and indeed the first German vehicle in the series (I don’t count last week’s Rolls-Royce as German, though you might).

Time for some eye candy.

Alpina has tuned and modified BMW vehicles since 1965. Today, Alpina models travel down the production line with standard BMW models, making them unique in the third party modification field. Alpina is not owned by BMW, nor is it an aftermarket modifier of completed BMW vehicles. The German government considers Alpina an independent automaker.

Though I’m sure many believe the BMW M6 is the pinnacle of the E24 6-Series, it is not so.

The B7S was created using a 635CSi model, and built at the Buchloe, Germany Alpina factory. Numerous visual touches here and there make it a bit obvious this is a special Alpina model, especially these superb multi-spokes, which are a long-standing Alpina tradition that continues today.

Alpina produced just 30 examples of this beautiful coupe for 1988, and all of them were manual.

The interior is finished in green Tartan plaid; it’s the sort of pattern manufacturers should use today. Alpina buyers received additional gauges over the standard BMW customer, as well as a bespoke wheel.

Alpina didn’t stop with exterior modification, however. The massaged and turbocharged six-cylinder engine produces 326 horsepower and 370 pound-feet of torque. Specialty cylinder heads, pistons, camshafts, exhaust headers, and a sport transmission with an Alpina clutch round out the highlights under the hood.

This example seems to be an other-market import, as it looks like all the numbers are still in German. There’s just 32,000 kilometers on this 29-year-old coupe, and you’ll pay for those low-blow kilos — the Cincinnati dealer is asking just shy of $300,000 for the opportunity to own a rare piece of Alpina history.

[Images via dealer]

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  • Ermel Ermel on Jun 27, 2017

    I believe the price on this can't be seen in terms of value, but in terms of rarity, like with ultra-rare versions of American muscle cars that also fetch ridiculous amounts of money just for being rare. I can't remember the makes and models obviously, being a German who never cared that much for American cars let alone muscle cars, but I seem to remember a seven-figure price for one such car quite recently.

  • Lon888 Lon888 on Jun 27, 2017

    Beautiful car yes. Worth $300K no. Dealer is hitting the pipe REALLY hard.

  • Tassos And all 3 were ordered by Fisker's mother. Seriously, given Fisker's terrible record of Failure in the past, only an utter loser, (for example, VGhost or Art Vandelay?), looking for a BEV terrible enough to be a proper replacement of his 11 mile range Fiat 500E, would order one of these. (apart from Fisker's mother)
  • Tassos And all 3 of them were ordered by Fisker's mother.Seriously, after Fisker's DISMAL record of UTTER FAILURE in the past, only a GOD DAMNED MORON would order this one.
  • RHD Any truth to the unconfirmed rumor that the new, larger model will be called the bZ6X? We could surmise that with a generous back seat it certainly should be!
  • Damon Thomas Adding to the POSITIVES... It's a pretty fun car to mod
  • GregLocock Two adjacent states in Australia have different attitudes to roadworthy inspections. In NSW they are annual. In Victoria they only occur at change of ownership. As you'd expect this leads to many people in Vic keeping their old car.So if the worrywarts are correct Victoria's roads would be full of beaten up cars and so have a high accident rate compared with NSW. Oh well, the stats don't agree.https://www.lhd.com.au/lhd-insights/australian-road-death-statistics/