Alpina returns to racing

ALPINA have announced their return to international motor sport.

After a 20-year absence from the competitive scene, the manufacturer best known for their development of ultra-high-performance variants of the BMW model range is to field a race car based on the BMW ALPINA B6S in the FIA GT3 European Championship, as well as major endurance events.

Racing with street-based 'dream' cars in GT3 has consistently attracted drivers, spectators and manufacturers alike.

In the hands of F1 and Touring Car drivers such as Niki Lauda, Jacky Ickx, Hans Stuck and Dieter Quester, ALPINA notched up numerous European Touring Car Championships and Nürburgring 24 hour wins, as well as the 24 Hours of Spa in 1970.

"We think the BMW 6 Series - especially with the massive torque of the supercharged 4.4 litre V8 ALPINA engine from the B6S (530hp, 725 Nm) - provides the ideal basis to challenge pure-bred sports cars such as Ferrari, Lamborghini and Aston Martin within the framework of GT3 regulations," said Andreas Bovensiepen, ALPINA proprietor.

With his own history in racing, Bovensiepen initiated and oversees the project. He sees GT3 with its line-up of 10 manufacturers, multiple national championships and starting grids of 45 cars in the European Championship as "the creme de la creme of its kind".  As in the 1970s, ALPINA will also sell race cars to individual campaigners, collectors and race teams.

ALPINA's new participation in the sport is part of a strategy of consistent growth and brand development. In particular, GT3 provides the opportunity to raise awareness in new markets cost effectively and without compromising the exclusivity of the marque.

New £10M engineering facility

Coinciding with entry into GT3 racing, a new £10million engineering centre, with industry-leading engineering equipment and capabilities, will soon be completed. This will allow ALPINA to make its services available to third parties, and to bring its products to market more quickly.

In a unique and close engineering partnership with BMW, ALPINA has been manufacturing racing and road-going BMW ALPINA automobiles for over 40 years.

click here for Racecar's supercharged E30 - doubtless Alpina's inspiration ;)