James May has a new addition to his garage. After driving an Alpine A110 on The Grand Tour, May bought one and is now enjoying driving it on a regular basis. In a new video for the Drivetribe channel on YouTube, he explains why he absolutely loves the French sports car in a very old-fashioned, Top Gear-style one-person review of the car.
In fact, Captain Slow says the A110 is not a sports car but a downsized supercar, despite the four-cylinder engine. “The engine is behind your back, the handling is very frisky, the luggage capacity is very poor, the rearward visibility is extremely compromised” - you have all the reasons to describe any car with such qualities as a supercar. It’s nearly the same experience you get in a McLaren, May says.
As a reminder, in non-S form, the A110 has a 1.8-liter turbocharged engine good for 249 horsepower (185 kilowatts) and 236 pound-feet (320 Newton-meters) of torque. James May finds this output more than adequate for the weight of the car, and one particular thing he seems to enjoy about it is the fact that it “feels much narrower than a full-size supercar.”
Anything James May doesn’t like about the A110? While he likes Renault’s flagship sports car from the side profile, he finds it somewhat dull from the front. “The problem, I think, is that the design language of 50+ years ago doesn’t square very well with the requirements and modern legislations such as crashworthiness, pedestrian protection, how high the headlights need to be off the ground.”
Gallery: 2018 Alpine A110 first drive
One thing we especially like about James May’s final conclusion is that he perfectly sums up the way modern cars should be built. Lower weight and smaller dimensions mean “less impact in every sense of the word.” We can’t agree more.