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Alpina BMW
BMW Alpina E21 B6

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The E21




BMW Alpina E21

No one knew quite what to make of BMW's first 3 Series model, the BMW E21.

Unlike the sporty 2002 models, the E21 was not an enthusiast's car. There were very few performance models, although BMW did made a 6-cylinder model, the BMW E21 323i. Paul Bracq's styling for the E21 was both an evolution of the 2002 lines, yet contemporary enough to attract over 1 million buyers to the showroom floors.

But Alpina knew what to do with the BMW E21.

The Alpina B6 2.8 was introduced at the IAA in 1978. Produced from March 1978 until January 1983, only 533 cars were built. The B6 2.8 was based on the 2.8 liter 6-cylinder engine from the 5 Series 528i model. Starting with 177 hp, Alpina fitted forged Mahle-pistons, modified the combustion chambers and used a Zenith-Pierburg-DL fuel injection system. The result was 200 hp, about the same as the famous 4-cylinder E30 M3, and enough to kick up some serious dirt.

The Alpina kicking up some serious dirt!

BMW Alpina E21 B6





Alpina added bigger tires, springs and shocks

To improve the E21's suspension, Alpina used Bilstein springs in front with gas-pressure shocks and shorter and stiffer Ahle springs. At the rear, Alpina used gas-pressure shocks from Bilstein. The 15" Alpina alloy-wheels are 7" wide at the rear with 205/50 tires. The front wheels were 6" wide with 195/50 tires. For extra stopping, the front brakes were ventilated, drilled discs.

BMW Alpina E21 B6

Clouds of Dust

BMW Alpina E21 B6

BMW Alpina E21 B6



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