Renault Alpine A110-50 Concept
(Friday 25 May 2012)
It's fifty years now since French manufacturer Alpine unveiled its gorgeous Renault-based A110 Berlinette at the Paris Show, and in celebration Renault (which bought Alpine in the early 1970s) has created a concept sports car called, for obvious reasons, the A110-50.
Apart from a certain curvaceous swoopiness, it doesn't look much like the original A110, and nor does it look particularly like the 400bhp 3.5-litre V6 mid-engined Megane Trophy race car, even though technically it's more or less the same thing.
It's lower and slightly wider, though, which should mean it handles even better than the Megane Trophy, and certainly better than the rear-engined A110, which Andrew Cowan (later the boss of the Mitsubishi Ralliart World Rally Championship team) once likened to "throwing a hammer backwards" after rallying one.
The A110 was quite a successful competition car all the same, winning the Monte Carlo Rally in the hands of Jean-Claude Andruet no less than eleven years after it first went on sale.
There is no talk of the A110-50 being used for motorsport, though we'd be delighted to hear of any plans for that. And it's even less likely to be built for road use in its current form, since niceties such as ABS and traction control have not been fitted in the interest of providing "the purest driving experience possible".