Unearthed: 1969 Renault Alpine A110

Classic Cars / Comments

One of the most famous rally cars of all time, the Alpine A110 is now a true classic while remaining a head turner.

French automaker Renault has a fine history of motorsport, particularly with regards to rallying. Although it retired from the sport several years back, Renault rally cars and drivers made history time and again in events such as the Monte Carlo Rally and the Mille Miglia. Like every rally car, a road-going version was also produced as regulations stipulated and the Renault Alpine A110 has gone down as one of the all-time rally road car greats, sitting alongside the inimitable Lancia Stratos.

Also known as the Berlinette, the A110 was built between 1961 and 1977. Available initially only as a coupe, it was first powered by a 1.1-liter engine that produced just 66 horsepower, which was sent to the rear-wheels via a five-speed manual gearbox. Considering the car's size and era, this output was actually quite respectful. And beginning in the late Sixties, the A110 became famous for its success in winning rally races in France. The car was soon given a new and more powerful engine, now rated at 125 hp, with dual-chamber Weber carburetors. The claimed top speed was 130 mph and the Alpine soon went on to international fame.

During the 1970-72 rally seasons, the Alpine A110 took part in the then newly created International Championship for Manufacturers and quickly established itself by taking home the prize in the 1971 Monte Carlo Rally. When the ICM was replaced in 1973 with the World Rally Championship, Renault had just completed its takeover of Alpine but opted to continue racing the A110. Drivers at this time included Bernard Darniche, Jean-Pierre Ncolas and Jen-Luc Therier, and the A110 won the majority of the races it took part in. As a result, Renault became the first World Rally Champion.

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As well as being manufactured in France, A110s were built in other countries (but with different names) including Brazil, Bulgaria and Mexico. This particular 1969 Alpine A110 that's up for sale on eBay was built in Mexico, one of just 508 units built in the country. The seller claims that nearly 80 percent of the parts are new but there are still many original elements remaining. Powered by a 1.4-liter engine with around 80 horsepower, it has just 50,000 miles on the odometer. Painted blue with a black interior, the car's body appears to be in relatively solid shape and the chrome trim looks good as well.

It has a buy it now price of $30,000 and the current bid, as of writing, is just under $18,000 with the reserve yet to be met. With its beautiful styling, rear engine/rear-wheel-drive layout and motorsport history, this 1969 Renault Alpine A110 shouldn't live its life parked in a garage. Judging by these photos, it's still raced today in some capacity. In other words, it's still being enjoyed just as much as it was when it first rolled off the assembly line. Photos courtesy of mgudimx.

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