2020 Alpina B5 and D5 S get fresh styling and more power

Joel Stocksdale

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With the introduction of the refreshed 2021 BMW 5 Series, it's only natural that BMW tuner Alpina would have updated versions of its B5 and D5 S on the way. And here they are, featuring the lightly updated styling of the new sedan (and wagon) as well as Alpina's signature wheels and unique body kits. But fresh styling is only part of the story for the new Alpinas, the other part is more power.

The B5 is the top-rung performance vehicle with Alpina's version of the twin-turbo 4.4-liter BMW V8. It makes 613 horsepower, 5 more than the previous model, and just 4 away from matching the BMW M5 Competition. The torque rating hasn't changed, but at 590 pound-feet of torque, it eclipses the M5's 553 pound-feet. It will hit 60 mph in just 3.4 seconds in sedan form, and 3.6 in wagon form. The M5 Competition is a bit quicker to 60 with a time of 3.1 seconds.

The D5 S is notably less powerful than the B5, since it has an 3.0-liter inline-six diesel engine with three (yes, three) turbochargers. It makes 402 horsepower now, a nice gain of 20 ponies over the old model. Torque matches the B5 at 590 pound-feet and is also unchanged from the previous car. The sedan version will hit 60 mph in 4.4 seconds followed by the wagon at 4.6 seconds.

Alpina also fits these cars with 15.5-inch brake rotors all the way around with four-piston calipers up front. Drilled carbon rotors are an option. They're also lowered on stiffer springs. All-wheel drive is standard on both as is a reworked eight-speed automatic transmission and a mechanical limited-slip differential. The B5 gets four-wheel steering.

Sadly, we don't expect either the B5 or the D5 S to be offered in the United States. The D5 S is of course a no-go being a diesel, and BMW has only seen fit to offer the B7 and XB7 here, so the B5 is unlikely. So we'll have to simply admire them from across the ocean.

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