The man whose life was entirely dedicated to ALPINA has passed away. Burkard Bovensiepen, the founder of ALPINA, was 87. He remains one of the most renowned and influential figures within the BMW community. Bovensiepen epitomized a lifelong devotion to BMW. His journey into modifying BMW vehicles commenced as early as 1962, a time when BMW had yet to establish itself as the automotive powerhouse it is today. BMW had narrowly avoided bankruptcy on multiple occasions before becoming the company we know today.

ALPINA Started as a Tuning Company

Image: ALPINA Automobiles

For over half a century, the town of Buchloe has been synonymous with exceptionally elegant, fast, desirable, and stylish BMWs. Established in 1965 by Burkard Bovensiepen,  ALPINA consistently achieved automotive excellence over the decades, like no other. Bovensiepen’s relentless pursuit of optimization extended beyond engines to other aspects, such as the craftsmanship of exclusive Lavalina leather in their in-house saddlery and the establishment of an in-house wine cellar, which eventually became a second pillar of the Bovensiepen family.

Up until 1983, ALPINA operated as a tuning and racing entity before evolving into a manufacturer. This transformation meant that ALPINA cars received their own chassis numbers and official tire approvals. ALPINA’s cars offered customers an exclusive blend of driving dynamics, pleasure, and luxury from the outset.

An exceptional engine was an integral part of this attractive mix, with ALPINA’s initial offerings, including components designed by Burkard Bovensiepen to enhance the performance of the BMW 1500, featuring a multi-carburetor system. In the subsequent decades, the company numerous unforgettable records, producing the world’s fastest and most powerful production sedans, leaving a lasting mark in motorsport.

Regrettably, Burkard Bovensiepen will not witness the future development of the ALPINA brand under BMW Group leadership starting in 2025. However, Andreas and Florian Bovensiepen are committed to ensuring the continued growth of their father’s life’s work.