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Formula 1 - 2021 season

Grownup_Rafbrat

LE
Book Reviewer
I wonder if that will push testing back or allow for a second few days of testing.
Gives Lewis more time to negotiate, does it?
 
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In the best “Yes Minister” tradition, it does seem to be a very “brave” policy, trying to create something tangible . . . from not very much at all . . .

. . . . epitomised by the Company’s rather “twee”, naïve, tag-line on their logo “Smile Machines since 1955”.

ALPINE

A brand born from competition for competition.

Alpine was founded in 1955 by Jean Rédélé, a young man passionate about competition. He named his company after his favourite playground for racing: the Alps.

When the original A110 road car was introduced in 1962, the company began to take off. By then, Alpine and Renault were close collaborators, Alpine cars being sold and serviced by Renault dealerships. By the early Seventies Alpine was a major force in top-flight rally competition. In 1971 Alpine took the three steps on the podium of the world-famous Rallye Monte Carlo for the first time, then again in 1973. The company went on to win the World Rally Championship Manufacturers’ title later that year.

At the same time Alpine’s road car sales were growing. Alpine built a dedicated factory in Dieppe in 1969 – the same site that produces the all-new A110 today – and in 1971 the A310 entered production. Two years later, Alpine was acquired by Groupe Renault.

Alpine achieved its most famous motorsport triumph in 1978; overall victory at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The factory continued to release new and innovative road cars throughout the Seventies and Eighties, including the A310 V6 and the GTA. Alpine production would eventually cease in 1995.

I cannot think why they imagine whatever they may have created in their short history of ONLY 66 years, amounts to a bold memorable pedigree, reputation, of significant provenance, that would be recognised or respected by anyone other than the most ardent Francophile.

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With a life-long employment and a continuing interest in things automotive, the ONLY vehicle I (vaguely) associate with Alpine is the rare, niche, A310 . . . .

1610629916944.png

The A310 was the next modern interpretation of the A110. The Alpine A310 was a sports car with a rear-mounted engine and was initially powered by a four-cylinder 1.6 L sourced Renault 17 TS/Gordini engine. In 1976 the A310 was restyled by Robert Opron and fitted with the more powerful and newly developed V6 PRV engine.

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I had to remind myself that the “RNM Alliance” referred to in the article/Press Release, is the “Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance”. It is now going through a period of retrenchment (consolidating their individual efforts, back to their respective continents), and continuing uncertainty following the Carlos Ghosn “affair”.
Renault-Nissan-Mistsubishi-Alliance-Logo-e1505784791385-700x420.jpg

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A welcome surprise, is the announcement that their future is linked to . . .

a 100% EV replacement of the A110 developed with Lotus, with also a,

“MOU with leader in lightweight, iconic sportscar Lotus to develop a next generation EV sportscar”.

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The re-named F1 team will presumably remain at its existing facility and retain its established infrastructure. However, whatever is to become of the Alpine (electric ?!) road-car interests, their existing facility in Dieppe could NOT be described as “extravagant”. It consists of merely the three bright, white, roofed buildings . . .

Screenshot_2021-01-14 ALPINE FACTORY Google Maps.png


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CONCLUSION

However, as with any new automotive start-up, I do wish them well with their statement . . .

"Alpine announced today its plans for long-term growth as Groupe Renault’s brand dedicated to innovative, authentic and exclusive sportscars.

Current activities of Alpine cars, Renault Sport Cars and Renault Sport Racing will be united as one entity under the Alpine brand. Alpine will bring together the credibility of an authentic brand, specialized manufacturing, engineering mastery with considerable media exposure from Formula One. Together, they set the foundations to truly create market value around Alpine and take it to a different league.

The newly created Alpine entity will be a “new generation” automotive Brand for discerning, passionate early-adopters".
 

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