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Alpina XD3 Power player or hooligan?

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When is a BMW not a BMW? When it is an Alpina. The BMW X3-based Alpina may wear BMW badges front and rear, but given how much has been changed, it is a very different car. So what are you getting for your money?

1) What is it?

Alpina is regarded as a car manufacturer in its own right. The company works closely with BMW to produce performance-enhanced models, straight from BMW’s own production line. Alpina works its magic on nearly every available BMW model, and the Alpina XD3 is based on BMW’s X3 compact SUV, but with a twist. 

2) What’s it like?

While Alpinas are engineered to achieve higher performance standards, they are also geared towards refinement. There’s an even greater emphasis on luxury and comfort, without compromising on overall speed and driving ability. This XD3 is no different.

Power comes from a 3.0-litre bi-turbo diesel powerplant that produces 350bhp. As a result the XD3 is good for a 0-100km/h sprint time of 4.9 seconds. Those figures are enough to trouble the likes of the Porsche Macan and Audi SQ5, and there is no question about the XD3’s performance capabilities on the road. 

At no point will you ever feel like a hooligan in this car. The XD3 pampers you with the kind of premium plushness that accompanies cars owned by serious power players. Small details like the hand-finished leather steering wheel with contrasting stitching, matched by specially developed leather upholstery, gives subtle hints that you’re in the right special car.

3) Should I buy one?

The question may be, can you buy one? All Alpinas are produced in limited numbers, and the XD3 is no exception. Thus, it will be no surprise to find that the XD3 doesn’t come cheap. Still, if you fancy some exclusivity and feel that the performance is worth the price, then the XD3 makes for a stand out SUV. 

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