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Future models - Alpine - AS110 - Premiere Edition

Geneva show: Alpine announces Premiere Edition

Moving premiere: Alpine’s limited Premiere Edition variant will roll out at the Geneva show, but its actual model name is yet to be confirmed.

AS110 details emerge but Alpine still holds its hand close ahead of Geneva debut

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Alpine logo20 Jan 2017

By DANIEL GARDNER

ALPINE continues to be one of the world’s most guarded car-makers with only minimal information released to date regarding its eagerly anticipated sportscar, but tasty morsels are trickling out ahead of the car’s public debut at the Geneva motor show.

The Renault-owned brand has not yet revealed what its first model will be named – although the AS110 moniker is a fair bet – but it has now revealed that the car will be offered from launch as a limited Premiere Edition version.

It is not yet known whether the French brand will launch Down Under, but the Premiere Edition order book has been opened for 11 European countries in 2017, followed by Japan and the United Kingdom in 2018.

The special editions will be limited to 1955 examples – most likely a reference to the year Alpine was founded – and customers can request a particular number in the production run. 1 and 1955 are expected to be snapped up fast.

Premiere Edition Alpines will have their individual number presented on a centre console plaque and are available to order in Bleu Alpine, Noir Profond or Blanc Solaire.

Pricing is yet to be finalised but the French car-maker says it will not sting customers for more than €60,000 ($A85,000).

Alpine has not specified exactly what will make the Premiere Edition unique, but in the absence of any concrete information about the standard AS110, your guess is as good as ours.

A zero to 100km/h acceleration time of 4.5 seconds is the only confirmed performance information at this stage and the possibility of a Mercedes-AMG partnership or 1.8-litre turbocharged four-cylinder powerplant is still hearsay at this stage.

The AS110 is said to have a power output of 205kW but rumours suggest a second variant wearing an AS1 boot-badge will take that figure up to 240kW.

Transmission details are also yet to be revealed but pundits report both six and seven-speed gearboxes by Getrag are in the pipeline. Manual, torque-converter automatic and dual-clutch transmissions are all possibilities for now.

Alpine has also released an insight into the AS110’s construction, with a handful of images that show its high-tech aluminium body and chassis.

According to the car-maker, fabrication with the lightweight material is not simple and requires special expertise, but the reward is a lighter vehicle, high-quality finish and agile handling.

A full view of the production vehicle is yet to be unveiled but a Vision concept revealed in February last year and a more recent disguised prototype offer more than a hint of what the showroom version will look like.

The large-bore centre-exit exhaust, fine race-derived diffuser and rear grille which nods to the original rear-engined Alpine all appear to have carried over to the production car, while a lycra-clad AS110 confirms that another heritage feature – its circular driving lights – will also debut at Geneva.

Alpine managing director Michael van der Sande said the decision to open the order book early was in response to a significant positive reaction from customers when the company announced the return of the brand.

“Alpines made such a mark because of the elegance of their designs, their nimble handling and their memorable successes in world class motor racing and rallying,” he said. “The interest that the announcement of Alpine’s return has generated across the globe inspired us to give sports car enthusiasts and Alpine fans early opportunity to reserve the new car.” “The Premiere Edition versions of the new model will be the first to come off the line and we wanted to allow Alpine fans to choose the number of their car”.

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