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Headline:Our Cars: Sideways to SafewayDate:11/06/2003
Source:   (Click Here for more details).Article
Issue:2003-23 (4 June 2003) (p. 70-71)         (Click Here for more stories from this issue).
Review:First Report : Driver loves it, passengers love it, even the dog loves it. But £50k for a 3-Series estate?

Expenses: None
Economy: 23.1 mpg
Likes
Sheer scope of ability, subtle Alpina styling, gorgeous wheels, comfort, rarity.

Dislikes
Bluetooth phone kit not perfect, er... Okay, price is still a bit of a worry.

Superb low-speed ride for something on 18inch rims with 40-profile fronts and 35s at the rear. Better than a 330i Sport? By a good 20%. Reason is the bespoke Alpina suspension, wheels and tyres.

Auto 'box is a joy.

It's fast, As in effing fast.Not M3 brisk, but 305bhp and 276lb ft ... pushing 1500kg is enough to keep a Boxter S honest. The engine, hand-built by Alpina, is a 3346cc, US-spec BMW E36 M3 (more torque than euro-model) cast-iron block with Alpina heads, injection and exhaust.

It's brakes don't fade, the chasis is neutral to slight oversteer bias.

Steering feel. One thing Alpina is especially brilliant at.

Anyone thinking of buying a C32 AMG estate or the forthcoming Audi S4 avant needs to drive one of these beforehand.


Sterling grey Alpina B3 S reg: B3 BMW
Cars:Alpina B3 s (E46 (02-))

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