Alpina RLE powstała jedynie w 66 sztukach, co czyni ją dziś wyśmienitą propozycją kolekcjonerską. O ile już podstawowe BMW Z1 uchodziło za wizjonerskie, awangardowe i niezwykle drogie, niemiecki tuner poszedł jeszcze krok dalej. Limitowana seria, 17-calowe felgi, niższe zawieszenie, zmodyfikowane wnętrze i lekarstwo na niedostatek mocy – silnik z Alpiny B3 o pojemności 2,7 l i mocy 200 KM – podniosły cenę do astronomicznych 116 tys. marek, czyli kwoty jaką należało położyć ówcześnie za Mercedesa 500 SL. Połowa z produkcji Alipny RLE trafiła na zawsze żądny elitarności rynek japoński, połowa została w Europie. Za doskonale utrzymany numer 54 (oryginalny przebieg zaledwie 30 tys. km) brytyjski dealer żąda aktualnie niemal 70 tys. funtów.
MOT Expiry: January 2016
Tax Expiry: Expired
Exterior Colour: Dream Black metallic
Interior Colour: Camouflage Leather and Nubuck
Top Speed: 142
0 – 60: 7.1
Transmission: 5-Speed manual
Engine Capacity: 2693cc
Engine Configuration: Straight 6
The Alpina RLE, or Roadster Limited Edition, was based on the BMW Z1 and was introduced in 1987. Originally costing 116,000 D-Mark, it was probably the most exclusive car on the German market at the time.
The Z in Z1 stood for Zukunft (German for future), and both the Z1 and RLE certainly felt every bit the ‚future’ when they were released, with the doors retracting vertically down into the car’s body instead of swinging outward or upward. With the high sills offering crash protection independent of the doors, the vehicle could be driven legally and safely with them up or down. These cars also introduced many other innovative features such as removable body panels, continuously zinc welded seams, Z-axle rear suspension, and a composite under tray that is entirely flat. The whole body was in fact made from plastic and could be removed completely from the chassis.
The BMW Z1 used a 2.5-litre six-cylinder engine but was considered by many to be underpowered. Alpina resolved the issue by replacing the engine with the 2.7-litre engine from the B3. Consequently the power was increased from 170hp to 200hp. As a result of the already decent chassis on the standard Z1, as well as its advanced rear axle, the only Alpina modification to the suspension was the fitment of shorter springs at the front. Together with the 17-inch Alpina wheels, the RLE looked sportier and more aggressive.
The standard BMW Z1 was not a common car with only 8,000 units produced, however the RLE was limited to only 66 cars in total. Half of the production was sold in Japan and only 33 cars remained in Europe. Each RLE is individually numbered, featuring its unique 1-66 designation on a plaque in the centre console, steering wheel, and on each wheel centre cap.
Electric doors, Electric windows, Electric mirrors, Digital clock, Cigarette lighter, Ash tray, Spare wheel, BMW first aid kit, BMW toolkit, Spare key.
Finished in the timeless Dream Black metallic, the paintwork on this Z1 is near flawless and boasts a wonderfully deep colouring. With absolutely no unsightly scuffs or scratches to note, every panel is perfectly straight, just as the factory intended. In true Alpina style both sides are boldly adorned with a fresh set of gold decals.
On close inspection there is no corrosion around the car, and virtually no chips to the front bumper or leading edge of the bonnet. All lenses and glass around the car appear in good order; even the rear window remains clear with virtually no imperfections to behold. Aside from a minute repair to the rear panel, the black soft top presents remarkably well too.
Unsurprisingly the interior of the RLE is in great shape. The dark grey Nubuck and camouflage leather upholstery is the most resilient interior to feature in the RLE and certainly appears to have stood the test of time in this example. With little or no wear to the bolsters, the seats remain tight and perfectly supportive.
The hand-stitched leather Momo steering wheel and handbrake lever retain a good texture, as does the Alpina gearknob. The leather trimmed dash shows no signs of distortion or sun damage and the high door sills also present well, with only very minimal wear to a small area on the driver’s side. The Nubuck-trimmed centre console features the RLE’s numbered plaque, which in this example is number 54 of 66. The steering wheel centre is also numbered.
ENGINE & TRANSMISSION
The under-bonnet of this Alpina is consistent with a car that has been used sparingly. Having covered less than 19k miles it is not surprising that all the plastic components display a healthy shine and many of the mechanical parts still retain their factory lacquer coating.
Looking further, there is no corrosion in the engine bay at all. The 2.7-litre engine itself presents very well indeed, and following a full mechanical inspection by our team of technicians is in fine fettle.
WHEELS, TYRES & BRAKES
Effortlessly filling the arches of this RLE, the 17-inch Alpina alloys on which the car sits are almost 100% blemish-free. The centre caps too present perfectly, each one proudly displaying the ‘Limited 54/66 Edition’ Alpina badge.
The wheels are shod in a matching set of Yokohoma tyres, each showing minimal signs of wear.