During a recent press event, Alpina boss Andreas Bovensiepen divulged a number of interesting details about the company, what it is working on, and what could have been.
While speaking with Autocar, Bovensiepen revealed that in the early 2000’s, Alpina thought about selling its own version of the Mini as its entry-level model.
The company went to the trouble of building and testing a prototype, but decided against bringing the car to market as they thought it would have been too complicated and expensive. Furthermore, any hope of an Alpina Mini was dashed when BMW released the second-generation 6-Series back in 2003. Alpina decided building its own version of the luxury car would make much more sense.
As we reported earlier this month, a Mini wasn’t the only project which Alpina considered but ultimately scrapped. Bovensiepen revealed, in separate interviews, that the company had developed a four-cylinder BMW i8 with a total of 460 hp. The one-off prototype was tested on public roads, but BMW didn’t allow Alpina to pursue the project and it was killed over brand identity issues. An Alpina i8 would have competed against BMW M vehicles which is something the company tries to avoid, instead preferring to sell vehicles that fill niches within the BMW family.