German tuner is back with another tuning take on Bimmer’s popular sports coupe

Alpha-N Performance certainly has a fascination for the BMW M2. It’s developed at least three different iterations of its program for the entry-level M car. If anything, the German tuner is proving that it’s an equal-opportunity purveyor of tuning upgrades for Bimmer models. This latest program is actually for the M4, just like the previous program, the M4 CRT. The only difference is this new program is a little more mainstream in nature with significant power improvements leading the way.

All told, Alpha-N Performance’s new kit for the M4 has 560 horsepower on tap. It doesn’t sound significant compared to the 700 horsepower that fellow tuner Carbonfiber Dynamics is offering, but it’s actually 40 horses more than what it offered on the M4 CRT kit. Just as important is the overall makeup of the kit. The power gains may get the headlines – and rightfully so – but the kit also features an aerodynamic body kit, new Recaro sports seats for the interior, a new set of wheels, and in case anybody’s interested, some attention-grabbing livery that screams the name of the tuner. There are some hits and misses on this kit, as is the case for most tuning programs, but the core needs are there to make it an attractive choice among those who are looking to get more out of their M4s.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

  • 2017 BMW M4 By Alpha-N Performance
  • Year:
    2017
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Engine:
    inline-6
  • Horsepower @ RPM:
    560
  • Torque @ RPM:
    520
  • Displacement:
    3.0 L
  • 0-60 time:
    3.6 sec.
  • Top Speed:
    190 mph
  • car segment:
  • size:
  • Purpose:
  • body style:

Exterior

2017 BMW M4 By Alpha-N Performance Exterior High Resolution Wallpaper quality
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2017 BMW M4 By Alpha-N Performance Exterior High Resolution Wallpaper quality
- image 720826
Alpha-N Performance started by breathing some life into the M4’s exterior.

In keeping with its reputation of building rounded tuning kits, Alpha-N Performance started by breathing some life into the M4’s exterior. That involves the addition of new aerodynamic pieces meant to help the sports coupe get the cursory performance improvements. The new carbon fiber hood, for example, features built-in air outlets to help the six-cylinder engine breathe a little easier. A new bespoke front bumper also sets up residence in the front to not only improve downforce, but to also channel more air into the brakes. Move to the back and there sits a carbon fiber rear wing that also has its dual function, namely to help keep the car’s weight as light as it can be while also improving downforce. They’re not overly sexy additions, but they do help keep the M4 on the ground when it’s going balls to the wall on a race track. A new set of lightweight 20-inch OZ Racing alloy wheels round out the exterior upgrades, although if a customer is feeling particularly plucky, he may be able to request that splashy red-light blue-and-dark blue livery on the sides of the M4. I’m not going to convince anybody to get that though but hey, people have different tastes.

How does it compare to the tuner’s M4 CRT tuning kit?

If you remember, the German tuner presented a different aftermarket take on the M4 back in April 2017. That one was touted under the guise of the “CRT” name after the now-iconic BMW E90 M3 CRT. That program didn’t come with a flush set of aero bits either, but it did have a new front splitter, a CRT-like rear spoiler, and a new set of 20-inch gold-finished wheels.

2017 BMW M4 CRT by Alpha-N Performance Exterior High Resolution
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2017 BMW M4 CRT by Alpha-N Performance Exterior High Resolution
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note: photo of the BMW M4 CRT by Alpha-N Performance

If not Alpha-N, then what other alternatives are out there?

That’s a solid question. The good news is there’s a lot of other options in the market. This is the BMW M4, after all, one of the most popular cars among aftermarket tuning companies. Fellow German tuner Carbonfiber Dynamics has an interesting take on the M4, one that actually includes a 56°NORD carbon roof box on top of cursory components like an MTC Design hood, a new front bumper, a rear wing from 3DDesign, and side skirts from Varis.

G-Power has gotten itself involved in the M4 tuning scene too. In fact, it already has a handful of kits available for the model with different aerodynamic iterations. One kit features pieces like a front lip spoiler, front splitter, and rear diffuser. Another kit focuses on wheel upgrades, specifically a set of 21-inch Hurricane RR forged alloy wheels that can be finished in a variety of colors, including Jet Black, Gun Metal Grey, Stardust Silver, and “special colors” that can be used provided that the customer pays extra for them.

2016 BMW M4 by CarbonFiber Dynamics High Resolution Exterior
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2017 BMW M4 by G-Power High Resolution Exterior
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note: photos of the BMW M4 by Carbonfiber Dynamics and the BMW M4 by G-Power

Interior

2017 BMW M4 CRT by Alpha-N Performance Interior High Resolution
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Interior from M4 CRT by Alpha-N Performance shown here.

There’s not much going on in the interior although that shouldn’t come as a surprise.

There’s not much going on in the interior although that shouldn’t come as a surprise. In its past programs for the M4, Alpha-N Performance has put in limited work on the cabin of the sports coupe. The only notable upgrade it did was to install Recaro sports seats on the M4 CRT tuning kit. Fortunately, the tuner went a similar route with this new kit with those Recaro sports seats. Other than though, the interior of the Alpha-N’s new tuned M4 is as stock as stock can be.

In this section, might as well ask BMW Individual

It might look like I mention this consistently in this section of all M4 tuning kits here, but I can’t stress this point enough. If there’s somebody you want to work on the interior of your M4s, it’s BMW Individual. We’ve seen it time and again what Bimmer’s personalization division is capable of. Examples like the M4 Pyrite Brown Edition is a good showcase of the division’s capabilities, including the Sonoma Beige Merino fine-grain leather for the seats and the door panels, as well as the Sycamore Red-Brown fine wood trim that adorns the cabin of the special edition M4. If that doesn’t check those boxes, BMW Individual can also go the sporty route with something akin to an M4 GTS-style makeover. Do M Carbon bucket seats sound nice? How about an M Sports steering wheel and a white rollover bar? All these pieces are available trough BMW Individual, and if I’m being honest, there are a lot more from where they came from.

2015 BMW M4 Coupe Pyrite Brown Edition Interior
- image 621120

note: interior photo of the BMW M4 Pyrite Brown Edition

The downside to going the route of BMW Individual is that these personalization requirements could quickly add up in costs. That Sonoma Beige Merino fine-grain leather treatment sounds luxurious and expensive at the same time. If budget is a concern, there is an option to just go for Bimmer’s offer of package and accessories. They’re minimal in scope – the Competition Package, for example, only gets you new lightweight M sports seats and a new design to the seat belt – but they are much cheaper than letting BMW Individual go crazy on the car.

Drivetrain

2017 BMW M4 By Alpha-N Performance
- image 720829

The scope of available aftermarket engine upgrades for the BMW M4 runs long and wide. Customers can literally choose among a handful of tuners offering engine modifications to the sports car’s 3.0-liter inline-six engine. Even Alpha-N Performance has had a handful of tuning kits for the M4, including one that offers 520 horsepower and 501 pound-feet of torque for the M4 CRT. This new kit takes up the power level a little higher, thanks to the addition of a “bespoke software tune” that includes a remapped ECU and upgrades to the intake and exhaust. The result is an output of 560 horsepower, an improvement of 40 horses over the M4 CRT program and just as important, 60 ponies more than the M4 GTS.

2017 BMW M4 By Alpha-N Performance Exterior High Resolution
- image 720831
What Alpha-N Performance created is an M4 that reportedly posted a “Bridge to Gandry” Nürburgring lap time of 7:20, eight seconds {quicker} than the M4 GTS.

What Alpha-N Performance created is an M4 that reportedly posted a “Bridge to Gandry” Nürburgring lap time of 7:20, eight seconds quicker than the M4 GTS, which posted a lap time of 7:28 in the same section of the world famous race track. The tuner made no mention of acceleration times and top speed, but an estimate sprint to 60-mph time of 3.6 seconds is entirely feasible, as is a top speed in excess of 190 mph, provided that the speed limiter is removed.

The kit falls in the middle of all the engine upgrades available to the M4

For those who are familiar with past M4 tuning programs we’ve featured here, there is a sense of having one too many choices going around that picking one over the rest becomes a little big difficult. Take for example a program that doesn’t approach the level of power that Alpha-N Performance offers. McChip has a program that provides 517 horsepower and 405 pound-feet of torque for the M4. It’s a shade less than the 520 horses that Alpha-N offers as part of its CRT program, but it’s still good enough to net an acceleration time to 60 mph in just 3.9 seconds. If there’s a need to get more than the 560 horsepower that Alpha-N is offering, the choice of tuner ranges from the likes of B&B Automobiltechnik, G-Power, and Carbonfiber Dynamics.

Tuner Power Torque 0 to 60 Time Top Speed
Carbonfiber Dynamics 700 horsepower 634 pound-feet of torque 3.0 seconds* 205 mph*
G-Power 600 horsepower 610 pound-feet of torque 3.5 seconds 200 mph*
B&B Automobiltechnik 580 horsepower 533 pound-feet of torque 3.5 seconds* 200 mph*
Alpha-N Performance 560 horsepower 520 pound-feet of torque* 3.6 seconds* 190 mph*
McChip 517 horsepower 405 pound-feet of torque 3.9 seconds 155 mph (with speed limiter)

B&B, in particular, has a kit that can boost power levels up to 580 horsepower and 533 pound-feet of torque, good enough to hit 60 mph from an idle position in around 3.5 seconds. G-Power’s kit can cover the same ground in the same exact time, but it does have offer a slightly higher output amounting to 600 horsepower and 610 pound-feet of torque. Then there’s Carbonfiber Dynamics, which has one of the fiercest engine upgrades in the market today. Not only does it boast of getting as much as 700 horsepower and 634 pound-feet of torque out of the M4, it does so by upgrading the turbochargers, putting in a new air intake, a high-flow air filter, a methanol injection kit, and a tuning module from Burger Motorsport. All told, Carbonfiber Dynamics’ offer can help the M4 sprint to 60 mph in supercar territory, possibly as quick as 3.2 seconds to go with a top speed exceeding 200 mph.

Still having a difficult time choosing which kit is the best? To be honest, there’s no kit that can be considered as such. It just depends on how much power a customer is willing to play with. For that, check out the table below to get a proper comparison on the offers of these tuners.

Suspension

2017 BMW M4 By Alpha-N Performance Exterior High Resolution
- image 720828

In keeping with its theme of providing enhanced performance credentials for the M4, Alpha-N Performance replaced the coupe’s standard suspension unit with an adjustable Öhlins coilover system. The set-up isn’t that different from what we’ve seen from other tuners who have also worked on upgrades for the sports coupe.

Pricing

2017 BMW M4 By Alpha-N Performance Exterior High Resolution
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Alpha-N Performance didn’t reveal its price figures for its new M4 program, but given the overall makeup of what’s included, it’s fair to say that a chunk of the total cost can be attributed to the aero kit, wheels, and that “bespoke software tune.” By comparison, the tuner’s engine upgrade program for the M4 CRT adds up to €800. With the wheels probably fetching €2,000 and the aero kit adding up to €1,500, a total cost of around €5,000, or $5,600 based on current exchange rates, shouldn’t be that far off from what Alpha-N is actually charging. In any event, the best way to ask for a proper price quote is to contact the tuner directly.

Competition

BMW M4 by B&B Automobiltechnik

2016 BMW M4 By B&B Automobiltechnik
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2016 BMW M4 By B&B Automobiltechnik High Resolution Exterior
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Two tuners I mentioned in the drivetrain section are B&B Automobiltechnik and McChip. Of these two, B&B actually has a multi-stage kit available for the M4. The biggest and most advanced of these kits (Stage 3) brings the power up to 580 horses. For those who want something a little less on extra power, the tuner’s Stage 1 and Stage 2 kits help bring power levels up to 490 and 540 horsepower, respectively.

Read the full review here.

BMW M4 by McChip

2016 BMW M4 by Mcchip-DKR
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2016 BMW M4 by Mcchip-DKR
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Let’s face it. Not everybody is looking to get massive gains for their BMW M4s. Should that be the case, McChip’s kit offering is a good choice, largely because the increased output only amounts to 517 horsepower and 505 pound-feet of torque. That represents power gains of just over 90 ponies, good enough to get some improved results without having too much more than what a customer intends to get.

Read the full review here.

Conclusion

2017 BMW M4 By Alpha-N Performance Exterior High Resolution
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By now, picking a program for the BMW M4 is a lot more difficult considering how many options there are on the table. Alpha-N Performance does well for itself though because it has variety and it has shown a penchant for providing the kind of performance gains that are needed to help the M4 achieve its full potential. The aero bits and the wheels are added upgrades, but every tuner has them in some form or fashion. It just boils down to whether the kits offered by Alpha-N Performance suits your style and preference.

  • Leave it
    • * Does not stand out
    • * Other options available
    • * Availability in other markets is a big question
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