First New Alpine to Fight the 911


The Alpine brand is set for a revival and reports are indicating that it's first model will be a proper mid-engined sports car.

Renault's upcoming Alpine revival will apparently be quite something to celebrate. Last year, the French automaker debuted the A110-50 Concept, a vehicle that commemorated Alpine's 50th anniversary and was powered by the Renault Megane Trophy's 3.5-liter V6 that produces 395 horsepower and 311 lb-ft of torque. The mid-engined concept was quite stunning and Renault has made it clear now that not only is a production version on the horizon but that the first new Alpine must fulfill a similar roll to the Porsche 911.

In other words, this car will need to establish what Alpine is as a brand. Being built in a joint project with Caterham, the new Alpine, according Renault's design chief Laurens van den Acker, will actually be more of a rival to the Porsche Boxster but will need to "create an iconic aura like the 911. The challenge with Alpine is to somehow fill this gap of more than 20 years and do a product that is believable," van den Acker stated. We need to create the 911 of Alpine. If we do that properly then we can consider (making) cars like the Panamera." But for now, the new Alpine/Caterham will be a two-seater, mid-engined sports coupe that will also take on the Alfa Romeo 4C.

Because this new Alpine will be developed alongside a new Caterham model, van den Acker also made clear he didn't want to do a car like the Toyabaru twins because they're too identical; his cars "need to be clearly different" in terms of styling and many other characteristics. No exact timetable has been given for production, but other sources have indicated a 2016 launch is likely.

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