Can Alpina’s newly tuned XB7 defeat the reigning segment champion – the Mercedes-AMG GLS63 – in this showdown?
In the world of insanely fast plush SUVs / crossovers is the latest Mercedes-AMG GLS63 is pretty high on the list. What’s special about the GLS63 is that it has room for the whole family thanks to its three-row seating and a 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 that produces a healthy 603 horsepower and 627 pound-feet of torque. That corresponds to a blistering 0-60 of 3.6 seconds in the real world, although Mercedes only specifies this with 4.1 seconds.
Those are insane numbers for a larger SUV that can carry the entire extended family. But of course the Mercedes-AMG GLS63 is not the only vehicle of this type on the planet. In this video by Throttle body The team decides to throw everything they can against the segment to see if it can be broken down. In this case, they went with a fortified version of the BMW X7 – the Alpina XB7.
Alpina tunes the BMW’s standard 4.4-liter twin-turbo V8, massaging 612 horsepower and 590 pound-feet of it, good enough for a 4.0-second 0-60. Of course, the tuner also optimizes the chassis and the exterior / interior to make it more of an exclusive product.
How do these two German machines stack up? In terms of styling, the duo has the BMW under control. “The thing that annoys me about this grille is that it’s now the little grille,” says TH. “That’s so horrible. The chrome lips don’t help either. “They also prefer the SUV-like profile of the GLS63 and its elegant, modern and technology-friendly interior.
With regard to the driving experience, TH notes that the Mercedes GLS63 is “livelier, more hectic, more brutal and louder”. However, they like the Alpina better. “On that day, the Alpina won over both of us with its perfectly balanced balance between performance and comfort. It’s one of the few super SUVs that doesn’t seem to sacrifice anything. ”
Yes, it seems that the driving experience overshadows all other BWM problems. “As ridiculous as it looks, and although Alpina unfortunately didn’t redesign any issues with the interior of BMW, I really loved living with it and I wish I had access to more Alpina products here in North America,” concludes TH.
It’s an interesting conclusion to make on this comparison, as TH seems to favor the Mercedes in virtually every category aside from the driving experience. But as other enthusiasts, we can certainly understand.