The Alfa Romeo 4C and Porsche 718 Cayman have some serious competition.
After numerous concept cars, spy shots and teasers, Renault has finally revealed the long-awaited Alpine A110 to the public at the Geneva Motor Show, a throwback to the original A110 sports car from the 1960s and 70s following Renault's resurrection of its Alpine sub-brand. After seeing the first official images released ahead of the show, we knew it was going to be a seriously sexy sports car – but its curvaceous body looks even more alluring in the flesh. The Alfa Romeo 4C and Porsche Cayman now have some serious competition.
In truth, the Alpine A110 is larger than the original car, sitting between the Alfa 4C and Porsche 718 Cayman. But that doesn't stop it from being breathtakingly beautiful from all angles. Despite being larger than the original, the A110 still manages to be ultra-lightweight thanks to its all-aluminium platform and body which has been bonded, riveted and welded to provide a rigid, yet light structure. As a result, the A110 tips the scales at just 1080 kg. Combined with its optimal weight distribution and low center of gravity, the A110 is an extremely agile sports car that will feel at home on winding mountain roads - just like the original A110 rally car that was driven to victory in the 1971 Monte Carlo Rally.
Of course, the Alpine A110 is more than just a pretty face. We now know its closely guarded performance figures, too. Powering the mid-engined sports car is a turbocharged 1.8-liter engine that produces 247-hp and 236 lb-ft of torque. Its light weight means it achieves an impressive power-to-weight ratio of 231hp per tonne, allowing it to hit 0-62mph in 4.5 seconds before maxing out at an electronically-limited 155 mph. For comparison, a Porsche 718 Cayman S will sprint to 0-62 mph 0.1 second slower despite packing an extra 100-hp, but has a faster top speed. The engine is mated to a twin-clutch, seven-speed paddleshift gearbox.
Purists will no doubt grumble about the lack of a manual option. Three driver modes can be selected with a choice of Normal, Sport and Track, which adapt the engine, transmission, steering, ESC threshold, exhaust note and the driver display accordingly. Alpine also says that the A110's aerodynamics were inspired by race cars and supercars, incorporating a completely flat floor and functional diffuser under the rear bumper to combine low drag with significant downforce. Also helping to reduce drag are air inlets located in the front bumper to improve airflow around the front wheels.
Making cars more aerodynamically efficient can sometimes spoil the looks, but this isn't the case here - the A110 is so aerodynamic that it doesn't even require a rear wing. Initially, the Alpine A110 Premiere Edition will be available in limited numbers in Europe available in blue, white or black, with only 1,955 entering production priced at €58,000 ($61,233). Sadly, there's still no word if the A110 will be coming to the US. Please make it happen, Alpine.