Using a rear-mounted engine from a Renault, the Alpine motor company first opened its doors to automobile production in France shortly following the Second World War. This automotive manufacturer was founded by Jean Rédélé. Using the Renault engine, the Alpine cars soon started to make a name for themselves when they started to make a number of wins in various races at the time.
All the way up until the 1950’s the aluminium body Alpines were winning races like Le Mans as well as Sebring. These wins increased sales and further encouraged the development of new and exciting models. However, when Alpine first started to look into exporting their cars throughout Europe, the Sunbeam Car Company had also released a new model known as the Sunbeam Alpine and as a result, caused an issue with the naming of the car.
With so many years passed since the end of World War II and the founding of Alpine, the original designs which had proven to be so successful were becoming obsolete. As a result, the 1960’s saw a number of changes in the design of the Alpine cars. Rather than using the CV4 which was the previous Renault engine, Alpine thus updated to the R8 Renault engine and like its predecessor, brought back the name of Alpine in the racing industry.
Again in the 1970’s, with the release of the Renault R16, Alpine too released a new model after learning from their past mistakes of keeping up with current trends. As a result of this new model, Alpine was able to stay ahead of the game in terms of the European motor industry and allowed them to continue producing new cars as well as new designs all throughout the 1970’s.
In 1971 Alpine achieved a 1-2-3 finish in the Monte Carlo rally, using cars with engines derived from the Renault R16. In 1973, they repeated the 1-2-3 Monte Carlo result and went on to win the World Rally Championship outright, beating Porsche, Lancia and Ford. During all of this time, production of the Alpine A110 increased and manufacturing deals were struck for A110s and A108s with factories in a number of other countries including Spain, Mexico, Brazil and Bulgaria.
Alpine continues to develop cars today under the ownership of Renault after a 1970’s purchase of the company. They continue to stay abreast in the many changes within the automotive industry and as a result, they are still capable of participating in a number of major auto races each and every year. Furthermore, many of their newer models are no longer composed of aluminium, but rather made of various composites and plastics which helps keep them light and last longer then ever thought possible before. The Alpines today are modified versions of the Renault as one can see when purchasing an upgraded Renault Alpine model.Original Authors: Nick (Globel Team)
Edit Update Authors: M.A.Harris
Updated On: 29/08/2008