Alpine was a French sports car manufacturer that was founded back in 1955. The company was usually using heavily modified Renault engines to power their cars. Thanks to their close connection with the French manufacturer, Alpine was eventually bought by Renault and given the task to build some of their specialty models. This is no longer going to be the case though. Why? Well, Alpine is now going to become Renault’s high performance sports car brand. Their first venture is the 2018 Alpine A110 which has been released not that long ago.
Even though the name has been used back in the ‘60s and ‘70s, the car is brand new. It is based on a bespoke chassis and it is one of Renault’s few mid-engine sports cars. The A110 is based on an all aluminum chassis with an all aluminum body.
Thanks to that, it has a wet weight of less than 2,400 pounds which makes it one of the lightest cars in its class. Thanks to its low weight, it doesn’t offer that much power but it should still be enough to make it a worth competitor for many of its more expensive rivals.
2018 Alpine A110 design
There is no question about the fact the 2018 Alpine A110 looks a lot like the original. This is because Renault decided to give Alpine a lot of credit so they based the car’s design on the ‘60s model. This is quite clear from the front where the modern-looking headlights are accompanied by round high beams which are identical to those on the original race-car.
The profile is quite similar as well with a center cabin and long front and rear overhangs. The rear window is mostly identical to the original all the way down to the small separation line from the C-pillar that is a trademark of this model. There are quite a few modern touches as well though. The center mounted exhaust, the LED lights or even the large 18 or 19 inch rims make the new A110 look like a true sports car.
Inside the cabin
Here they tried to keep the A110 as easy to use as possible and we have to say that Alpine and Renault didn’t disappoint. In fact it is quite clear that they used Ferrari and Nissan’s GT-R as inspiration which is not what we would call a bad decision. The button-controlled transmission, the round steering wheel wrapped in leather and Alcantara or the large paddle shifters mounted on the steering column should give it an edge over its rivals. The digital instrument cluster as well as the standard Sabelt seats should allow any driver to find a comfortable and competitive driving position. Also, despite being a mid-engine sports car, the A110 features considerably more trunk space than some of its rivals.
Under the hood
Instead of an exotic engine, the 2018 Alpine A110 boasts a 1.8 liter turbo-four gas engine. This is actually a new engine which has been developed by Renault and Nissan specifically for this application. Even though it is a low displacement powertrain, it manages to squeeze 252 horsepower and 320 Nm of torque which is actually on par with most of the cars in this class. The engine sends the power to the rear wheels via a dual-clutch Getrag 7 speed automatic of a similar design to those found in certain VAG applications. This allows the A110 to get to 62 MPH in just 4.5 seconds with a top speed likely in excess of 150 MPH. Later down the road we wouldn’t be surprised if a hotter version of the A110 will be released. This might offer even more power and hopefully a manual which would make it a nearly perfect sports car.