It’s been five months since Alpina revealed its new XD3 at the Geneva motor show with a tarmac stretching torque output, but the German marque has only just opened order books in Britain. For £57,900 you can now enjoy Alpina’s reworked X3 with a twin-turbocharged 3.0-litre six-cylinder diesel engine, providing your right foot with the reigns to 333hp and a substantial 516lb ft of torque from just 1750rpm.
Alongside the XD3 is the new XD4 – Alpina’s version of the X4 – that uses the same engine, which gives the pairing 14lb ft more than the BMW M40d variants. For those wondering, Alpina’s new cars can also beat BMW’s hottest diesel models to 62mph by two tenths at 4.7sec and exceed their 155mph limited top speeds by 3mph. The new XD3 also offers modest bragging rights over its predecessor with two tenths shaved off the 0-62mph time and 2mph added to its top speed.
PHers based on the continent will be offered even more performance as their XD3 and XD4 models will use quad-turbocharged version of the same black pump-fed six-pot. That motor provides 388hp and 568lb ft, cutting the 0-62mph times of cars sold on the other side of the channel to 4.6sec and upping their top speeds to 165mph. Unfortunately, as per the wider decision regarding the phatter oil-burner, no right-hand drive cars will be made available this side of the channel.
Obviously, fuel economy and CO2 are high on criteria list for buyers of hot DERV models, but anyone expecting to see gains in efficiency over the X3's predecessor will be disappointed; thanks to the new Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure (WLTP to you and I ) the new cars – on paper at least – fare worse. Official figures state that the two all-wheel drive Alpina diesels emit 238g/km and offer 31.4mpg combined. This compares to 174g/km and 42.8mpg in the old XD3, although Alpina claims that in real-world driving scenarios the new car is about the same.
Along with their new powertrain, the XD3 and XD4 come with the usual Alpina enhancements, which include adjustable dampers with firmer springs and those gorgeous multi-spoke alloy wheels in 20-inch or optional forged 22-inch forms. There are also four-piston brake calipers with 395mm discs at the front and 370mm discs at the rear as standard, although buyers can specify uprated composite brakes to enhance stopping power further.
On sale now, the XD3 and XD4 are presently the quickest X3 ad X4 variants you can buy. That will change when the BMW X3 M and X4 M models arrive from the Bavarian car maker’s performance arm using the same twin-turbocharged six-cylinder as the M3/M4 to offer around 430hp. Although not even M Division's ouput will match the Alpinas for exclusivity – just 12 per cent of XD3 and XD4 sales are predicted to reach Blighty’s shores. 14 of the last generation XD3 ended up here - and before Dieselgate erupted, they sold like proverbial hot cakes.