Long time BMW performance house Alpina is currently considering making performance hybrids in the future. The success of hybrids and electric vehicles in the market has prompted the 50 year old tuning firm in modifying alternative powered vehicles.
In an interview with Alpina CEO Andy Bovensiepen for Autocar UK, he said “ Hybrid technology is advancing quickly. We’re now seeing what I’d call ‘second-generation’ hybrids and EVs, like the BMW i8, and it’s becoming more interesting. The thing we have to remember is that our customers like to drive quickly and they also buy our cars to be used daily. And hybrid technology hasn’t been good enough for that up to now. The danger is that the car is terrific for 200 miles, but then the small battery runs out and for the rest of the journey you have a disappointing drive.”
Alpina will go ahead on the performance hybrid project if they find a suitable platform in BMW's current product lineup. “If we have a good technical base of a car from BMW and we also see the sales figures taking off, then we could have a car ready within two years.” said Bovensiepen. Alpina is also considering the use of LPG in alternative power performance cars. Alpina has been successful in making high performance diesels particularly with the D3, a BMW 330d that packs 350 PS and 700 Nm of torque while consuming 16 km/l.
Despite dabbling in performance diesels, Alpina says six cylinder gas models are still the at the heart of the range. “We can’t forget our six-cylinder gas engine. Sure, we have strong demand for diesel, but the gains in petrol engines have been very strong as well.” said Bovensiepen.