BMW is close to revealing its first M3 Touring, but semi-official BMW tuner Alpina has been offering its own high-performance wagon based on the 3-Series Touring for a number of years.
It's called the B3 Touring, and a prototype for an updated version has just been spotted. The arrival of the updated B3 Touring (and B3 sedan) should coincide with the arrival of an updated 3-Series family later this year.
The B3 Touring prototype features revised headlights, which will be common with the updated 3-Series. There are also new fascias front and rear, plus signature Alpina wheels.
We also know that the updated 3-Series will feature a new dash design with floating screens, similar to what we see in the battery-electric i4. This should also make it into the updated B3, along with typical Alpina interior treatments like a custom steering wheel, various trim options, and Alpina-specific graphics in the instrument cluster and infotainment system.
2023 BMW Alpina B3 Touring facelift spy shots - Photo credit: S. Baldauf/SB-Medien
It isn't clear what mechanical mods are planned. The current B3 is powered by the same 3.0-liter turbocharged inline-6 normally found in the M3 and M4. The engine delivers 462 hp and a massive 516 lb-ft of torque in the B3. With such numbers, owners enjoy 0-60 mph acceleration approaching 4.0 seconds and a top speed in excess of 186 mph.
Completing the mechanical package is an 8-speed automatic and all-wheel-drive system.
The updated 3-Series is expected to be revealed shortly. The arrival of the B3 sedan and this B3 Touring wagon should trail the regular BMW by several months. A B4 Gran Coupe based on the latest BMW 4-Series should arrive about the same time.
Sadly, Alpina doesn't offer its B3 and B4 models in the U.S., since Alpina is a small operation whose global sales total less than 2,000 units per year. We do get some Alpinas, though only the high-end B7, XB7 and B8 Gran Coupe. An updated B8 was revealed earlier in February, and an updated XB7 is just around the corner.