Ah, the internet. As I often say to my history students, back in the ancient times people actually had to go to a library to look up facts. Take production data, for example. Let’s say you wanted to know how many of a particular model were made. Well, you could phone the manufacturer, which probably wouldn’t get you anywhere. You might head to a knowledgeable dealer, but they’d probably lose interest as soon as it became clear you weren’t there to actually buy anything. You could write the manufacturer and hope for a correspondence back – probably in a few months. Or, if you were quite rich, you could hop on a plane and head to the company’s headquarters, hoping to be allowed in to the archives. But now, on a seemingly daily basis, more information is added to the nebula which is the internet. Some of it is true, some of it is false, and some is misinterpreted. As I say to my students, know your source. If you’re relying on the NBC Nightly News for your facts, for example, you might find that Brian Williams hand-built this E9 himself. Too soon?
All posts in Alpina
These days, I think you could slap an E30 badge on just about anything and the cult of the small sedan would perk up and pay attention. If the E30 was the natural choice for a sporting executive in the 1980s, it’s become the defacto way to instant street credentials in the European scene. “Sure bro, you might have a 2JZ-GTE Supra, but I got an E30 dawg!” you might overhear being conversed with a heavy beat from Ludacris pumping in the background and scantily clad women draping themselves over your Claus Luthe designed hood, for example. Is that not what happens? Well, the appeal of the E30 is such that you could easily believe that might be the outcome of turning the key in one. As an Audi fan from the same period, I have to admit a certain amount of jealousy; not so much in the design, but in the plethora of choices of what’s available in the market and the amount of manufacturer and aftermarket support. It’s something you just don’t really see in the Audi camp, for example. That means that you can have some mild to wild examples of E30s to choose from each and every day of the week. They’ve also hit importation status on some later models, so the flood gates have quite literally opened and a steady stream of Euro market cars is popping up for sale, trying hard to capitalize on the car made popular by the success of capitalism. As such, today for Tuner Tuesday I have two E30s to consider; a wild Alpina B6 3.5 from 1986, and a 1990 325i right hooker with a host of Hartge upgrades. Who wins the tune-off?
CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1986 Alpina B6 3.5 on eBay
I’ve recently had the pleasure of writing up a few very cool Alpinas thanks to a new seller who seems to be flooding the market. Today, unlike the Japanese seller on eBay, there are two B10s that are already located in the Americas – Canada, to be specific, where it’s a bit easier to get these European market cars imported. So here we have two iterations of Alpina’s vision of the 5-series; in the E34, it’s a 1991 3.5/1 that was very similar in many regards to the B11 3.5/1 I featured Tuesday. On the newer end of the spectrum is the 1998 B10 V8; a huge jump in power to accompany the newer chassis. Which is your flavor? Let’s break down what you’d get with each:
CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1991 Alpina B10 3.5/1 on eBay
Another week, another Alpina treat from our favorite new tuner seller from Japan. This time, unlike the mostly 5-series based models that have popped up for sale there is a E32 model on offer. The E32 was a big step up in terms of luxury and driving dynamics from the E23, fully modernizing the high end lineup for BMW. As they had with previous models, Alpina immediately had their hand with the new model and breathed their normal aftermarket life into the large executive sedan. That meant a turned up engine good for 250 horsepower (261 without catalyst) although that engine – from the E28 B10 and E30 B6 – was replaced with a 254 horsepower version in 1988 which was shared with the E34 B10 3.5/1. In addition, the normal suspension, wheel and interior treatments were complimented by some minor aerodynamic tweaks and exhaust upgrades to create a decidedly more performance oriented luxury car:
CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1989 Alpina B11 3.5/1 on eBay
It seems we often list multiple cars from the same seller; in some cases, that’s simply because they have the best examples that are available. EAG and Sloan Cars are great examples of this, amongst many. However, there’s a second tier of cars that we feature – eye candy that lies abroad and would be more difficult to procure. Such is the case with dealers like 4Star in England who seemingly has an endless supply of incredible examples of cars we all want. I think, however, that we need to add “ExoticCarsJapan” to the list, since this is now the third successive Alpina and fourth BMW I’ve written up from them. However, unlike the two previous E28 5-series B9s, today’s example is quite a rare example – a 1982 C1 2.3 E21: