The hotly anticipated, rear-wheel-drive, mid-engined sports car seems to be quite adept at hooning.
Reformed sports car maker Alpine has dropped the first official teaser of its upcoming A120, one of the most hotly anticipated new models that is due for launch in 2017.
Alpine’s dedicated website and Youtube channel have gone live, and ordering has opened for the initial First Edition model, suggesting the car’s launch is imminent.
The Alpine name hasn’t been around since the mid-1990s. The company was founded 40 years earlier by Renault tuner and racer Jean Redele. It quickly graduated from making tuning parts to building Renault-based, rear-engined sports cars.
Alpines proved hugely successful in racing and rallying, often punching well above their weight. Renault bought the company in 1973 and spliced it into the factory Renault Sport racing department. Alpine continued producing rather idiosyncratic road cars until Renault pulled the plug in 1995.
Beneath the camouflage, the A120 in the video appears remarkably similar to the Alpine Vision concept unveiled earlier this year, and prototypes that have spotted testing on public roads. The concept's styling was willfully retro, drawing heavily on the classic, giant-killing A110. And yet it was utterly modern, as well, with taut lines and a muscular stance.
Showing the A120 powersliding around in the video confirms that it is rear-wheel-drive, and the slats below the rear window suggest it is mid-engined.
According to Autocar, the A120 is powered by a 1.8-liter, four-cylinder, turbo unit based on the 1.6-liter unit found in the Renaultsport Clio. An output of 250 horsepower (186 kilowatts) has been suggested, and there could be a hardcore, 300 hp (224 kW) version.
The First Edition is limited to 1,955 units - signifying the year Alpine was founded - and can be ordered through a bespoke app. There are no details on the specs yet, but buyers do have a choice of color. A deposit of €2,000 ($2,150) secures one; the full price is listed as €55,000 ($59,300).
That figure puts the A120 in exactly the same bracket as the Alfa Romeo 4C and Porsche 718 Cayman - tough opposition.