The Comeback Kid: Exploring the new A110

The Comeback Kid: Exploring the new A110

By: Guilherme Marques

The new A110 marks the return of the Alpine name

Alpine was created 63 years ago by Jean Rédélé in his hometown, Dieppe. Gifted behind the wheel, the Frenchman was victorious several times in major competitions such as Mille Miglia and Critérium des Alpes – the rally whose name inspired his brand.

The story of the French brand begins with the A106 model, in 1955, while the A110 Berlinette, one of the most iconic cars in automobile history, was launched in 1962. Triumph at the 1971 Monte Carlo Rally, in which Alpine had three A110s in the first three places, and a repeat performance two years later, when they also won the works’ team world title at the World Rally Championship, all contributed to giving the brand its immortal status.

In 1975 the Renault Group acquired Alpine and the collaboration resulted in a historic win at the 1978 24 Hours of Le Mans car race with the A442B, driven by Didier Pironi and Jean-Pierre Jaussaud. In 1995 Renault decided to suspend Alpine. For four decades, over 30,000 vehicles of various Alpine road models came out of the Dieppe factory, over 70 competition single-seaters and 37 sports car prototypes. Altogether, Alpine achieved over 1,000 victories in every discipline of four-wheel motor sports, along with 26 rally titles, six with single-seaters and four rallycross championships.

Twenty-three years later (as of time of the magazine’s publication), the first Alpine of the 21st century has a 1800cc, 252-horsepower rear mid-engine, a seven-speed automatic transmission controlled by paddles mounted on the steering wheel, and rear-wheel drive, in keeping with the tradition of every model Jean Rédélé built in Dieppe. Its light weight is also responsible for the A110’s extraordinary performances: 0-100km/h in just 4.5 seconds. Preserving the aesthetic elegance of the 1962 original, it introduces innovative and very modern solutions that make it instantly timeless.

The avant-garde passenger compartment, with high-quality materials, features fabulous Sabelt sport seats, a Focal audio system and a floating centre console, resulting in an extremely attractive environment.

Alpine is back, which is great news for those who regard cars as objects of desire.


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