This is the week when Renault makes its move to take on the hugely successful premium Citroen DS range and the stylish Peugeot RCZ after it announced it will be revealing the eagerly-awaited Renault Alpine for the first time.
While its fellow French manufacturers have successfully launched their very own ‘halo cars’, bringing exciting new models to the range, Renault has fallen behind.
It may be a leader in electric cars but the brand lacks a car with ‘wow factor’ – and the historic racing Alpine brand would certainly bring that.
Alpine is the ideal name to bring a sporty, racing-inspired car to the brand. Having teamed up with Renault in the 1960s, it went on to achieve a 1-2-3 finish in the Monte Carlo rally in 1971 and win the World Rally Championship.
Fittingly, the teaser image released by Renault shows an Alpine car with a 1971 registration plate, hinting at a design nod towards the racing brands’ illustrious past.
Designed to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Alpine A110, the new concept will be based on the more modern Renault Megane Trophy race car and could use a 395bhp V6 engine.
It is also rumoured to incorporate the design first shown in the Renault DeZir supercar concept released in 2010, including the low, road-hugging body, elongated grille and curved wheel arches.
Renault announced it was re-introducing the Alpine range in 2007 and it has been a long wait to see what it makes of the brand, but the wait is set to be over this week when Renault reveals the final model.
The introduction of a new Renault Alpine will be a separate, ‘halo’ range of models for Renault and, if it all works out, could have a similar impact to the likes of the revived Citroen DS line for the French manufacturer.