Alpine A110 Finally Enters Production In France
18 December 2017 - motor1
Alpine is officially back, and the company is already considering what to do next.
Renault revealed the revived Alpine brand's A110 sports coupe at March's Geneva Motor Show, but production of the consumer models has only just begun. For a historical connection with the maker's original vehicles, the new models come from the same plant in Dieppe, France, which dates back in 1969.
The old factory required extensive upgrades to be up to the task to produce the modern, aluminum-intensive A110. After two years of work and an investment of 35 million euros ($41.2 million at current exchange rates), it's time for the new vehicles to come off the line. The workforce there is also 60 percent larger than before.
The new A110 puts coupes like the Porsche 718 Cayman and Alfa Romeo 4C in its sights. Power comes from a 1.8-liter turbocharged four-cylinder sitting behind the driver. It pumps out 252 horsepower (188 kilowatts) and 236 pound-feet (320 Newton-meters) of torque, which is allegedly enough to reach 62 miles per hour (100 kilometers per hour) in 4.5 seconds. The only available gearbox is a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox.
To make the most of this output, Alpine keeps weight low by extensively using aluminum for the A110's body panels and chassis. The result is a coupe tipping the scales at just 2,381 pounds (1,080 kilograms). A recent video indicates the coupe is quite tossable on the road.
If the standard variant isn't up to your standards, then Alpine already reportedly has a quicker and lighter weight version of the A110 under development with the codename Sport Chassis. It would retain the existing engine, but additional tuning would push the output to around 300 hp (224 kW). Stripping everything unnecessary from the cabin could take a further 110 pounds (50 kg) off the scales. Since production of the regular A110 is only just starting, don't look for the hotter variant to arrive for at least a year.
The next new model to come from Alpine will reportedly be a performance-oriented compact crossover. Existing platforms from the Renault Nissan Alliance would provide the basis for this vehicle. Expect the SUV to maintain Alpine's legacy of having a low weight and high-output four-cylinder engine.