Renault-owned Alpine is debating whether to enter the American market by the end of the 2020s. In the meantime, the sports car manufacturer is taking on a completely different challenge in the United States: Pikes Peak. It released the first official details and images of the heavily-modified A110 it’s sending to the annual hill climb held in Colorado.
Developed jointly with Signatech, and presented as “the most extreme A110 ever,” the coupe shares little more than a name and a handful of styling cues with its regular-production counterpart. Alpine completely redesigned its aerodynamic profile by adding a full, aggressive-looking body kit that includes a front splitter, more aerodynamic door mirrors, a roof-mounted fin, and a two-part rear spoiler. The brand notes these add-ons are functional: the A110 needs as much downforce as possible to quickly and safely tackle Pikes Peak’s 156 corners.
The scoop on the roof, positioned directly in front of the fin, feeds air into the engine. While technical details aren’t available, Alpine states it increased the engine’s output to nearly 500 horsepower. In comparison, the A110 found in showrooms is powered by a mid-mounted, 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine turbocharged to 300 horsepower. The 200-horse hike is even more impressive when you consider that Alpine lowered the coupe’s weight to about 2,094 pounds – that’s approximately 338 pounds less than the street-legal model.
Several other details help the A110 stand out from other variants of the coupe. Up front, the LED lights are much thinner than the production car’s. Out back, the standard rear lights remain but don’t turn on; they’ve been replaced by LED strips integrated into the wing and the fin, Le Mans-style. The wheels wear full covers, and the American flag-themed livery is symbolic considering Alpine’s growing interest in our market.
Alpine and Signatech will continue testing the A110R in the coming months, both in France and in Colorado. The coupe’s debut in Pikes Peak’s Time Attack 1 category is scheduled for June 25, 2023. French pilot Raphaël Astier, the 2022 FIA R-GT Cup winner, will drive the car.