Looking to buy Alpina Roadster S

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patrickm
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue May 07, 2019 3:46 pm

Looking to buy Alpina Roadster S

Post by patrickm » Wed May 08, 2019 11:47 pm

Hi....I have just joined the alpina register and I am interested in buying a Roadster S (Lux). Have spent quite some time over last few weeks looking on web sites. There seems to be prices all over the place and it would be interesting to know what they actually sell for. Any advice and tips would be much appreciated. Thanks a lot in anticipation.

PerryGunn
ALPINA
ALPINA
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Joined: Thu Jun 14, 2012 10:30 pm
Location: By the seaside

Re: Looking to buy Alpina Roadster S

Post by PerryGunn » Thu May 09, 2019 9:13 am

You might want to keep an eye on https://z4-forum.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=50&t=88374 as it lists cars for sale and asking prices over the last few years

Prices seem to be on the up but well-looked-after examples with good provenance will always command higher prices and tend to be sold relatively quickly.

As to what they actually sell for...
Common sense says that, on average, it's likely to be less than the asking price...
How much less depends upon your negotiating skills...
Alpina Roadster S #320
BMW X3 F25 LCI 30d

patrickm
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue May 07, 2019 3:46 pm

Re: Looking to buy Alpina Roadster S

Post by patrickm » Thu May 09, 2019 10:37 am

Thanks for the feedback...as they say in business "nobody pays list price".

Are there any mechanical/electrical weak spots I should be aware of when buying?

PerryGunn
ALPINA
ALPINA
Posts: 1645
Joined: Thu Jun 14, 2012 10:30 pm
Location: By the seaside

Re: Looking to buy Alpina Roadster S

Post by PerryGunn » Thu May 09, 2019 11:26 am

patrickm wrote:
Thu May 09, 2019 10:37 am
Are there any mechanical/electrical weak spots I should be aware of when buying?
Running and servicing costs are in line with the 3L Z4, road tax is plg rates and 30+ mpg is the norm unless on a hoon. If any of the bespoke Alpina bits need replacing they can be quite expensive

In the main, the 'issues' tend to be 'normal' Z4 things such as rear springs breaking, 'sticky' steering etc. you can get info on most of those through the Z4 forum buyer's guide - https://z4-forum.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=21281

Over and above that, these are the pointers that I was given when I was hunting

Check the service history fully.
- Check it had the 1200 mile running in service as this is absolutely essential

- Subsequent services as per the service book schedule (if low-mileage, should have a service every 2 years even if hardly used)

- 2 yearly brake fluid changes.

Other things to note:
- Rear coil springs are standard BMW items and they snap on all Z4s

- Vanos can get noisy, and may need changing at some point

- Sticky Steering: the electric steering electronics on the E85 can suffer from heat degradation. Get her stinking hot around your feet for half-an-hour or so and see if the steering starts to 'grab' when you turn the wheel. If this happens, it requires a replacement steering column.

Test drive:
- Ask for the car to be cold when you get there. Start her up, and she will settle into a rough, loud, growly, idle. Let her sit on idle for 30-40secs and the noises will subside of their own volition and she will reach normal tickover. If all this occurs (including the noisy bit) then all is well.

- When she has warmed a little, find a 'suitable road', open the tap in 2nd or 3rd and let her go. She should rev from 'trundling speeds' to the red line with no flatspots or hesitation. Any hesitation; ask questions. Could be Vanos, cam position sensor, MAF or a headgasket issue.

- Be aware that they accelerate brutally fast, so watch where you do it for license-preserving purposes.

- You should also find she sits at 30mph quite happily in 6th gear

Other than that, it's the normal Z4 checklist and the usual things that you look at on a car - panel gaps, signs of painting/repair work, overall condition etc. Bespoke Alpina parts can be quite expensive but some, such as the wind deflector, have direct BMW equivalents.

You won't notice it during an inspection, but oil consumption in the 3.4S engine is normal. You need to keep an eye on the oil levels because the E85 oil level sensor isn't fitted as it's incompatible with the 3.4S engine. Alpina quote 1L/1000 miles as normal consumption but it varies quite a bit, Ade Flint's car was drinking 1L/500miles, Ade experimented with slightly thicker oils to control oil consumption and I think he settled on castrol 5w40.

As far as oil goes, I exchanged emails with Axel Rimpler, the Alpina production manager in Buchloe, and Alpina now say that both 0w30 and 10w60 are 'recommended' for the engine - In the real world this means that any oil between 0w30 and 10w60 that meets the BMW LL04 spec should be fine.

Unless the customer tells them not to, BMW now fill them with TWS 10w60 (same as an ///M) but that's a bit too thick and, unless you experience a high burn rate, it's best to stick with the oil Alpina originally recommended for the engine (Castrol 0w30). Mine had TWS in her when I collected her but I quickly changed it to 0w30 - a 30 minute DIY job with an oil pump - and I noticed the difference.
Alpina Roadster S #320
BMW X3 F25 LCI 30d

patrickm
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue May 07, 2019 3:46 pm

Re: Looking to buy Alpina Roadster S

Post by patrickm » Thu May 09, 2019 12:00 pm

Many thanks for this, much appreciated and the link to Z4 forum.

I will let you know how I get on.

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