Renault Alpine Could Get New, 296-Horsepower 1.8 Turbo
Renault’s upcoming Alpine sports car will reportedly use a newly developed turbocharged, 1.8-liter, four-cylinder engine offered with three outputs. That’s the word from Automotivpress, which claims the new powerplant, developed by Renault and Nissan, is derived from the 1.6-liter unit currently available in the 2013 Renault Clio RS.
According to the report, the base model will get a version tuned to crank out 250 PS (246 horsepower), while the mid-range engine will deliver 275 PS (271 horses). The most powerful Alpine will hit dealerships with 300 PS (296 horsepower), as well as different cylinder heads, a revised cooling system, and optimized engine mapping.
The French outlet also claims the Alpine will get its very own transmission in the form of a bespoke dual-clutch unit. Whether this new EDC will be shared with other models remains unknown, but it seems the Alpine won’t be the only vehicle to use the new 1.8-liter four-banger. This unit will also find its way into the upcoming Megane RS, as well as in Nissan’s future Golf GTI competitor, the Pulsar Nismo.
As previously announced, the first Alpine of the 21st century will arrive for the 2016 model year. However, it’s not yet clear whether Renault plans to sell it in the U.S. What I do know for a fact is that the production version will borrow most of its styling from the 2015 Renault Alpine Celebration Concept launched ahead of the 2015 24 Hours of Le Mans.
Continue reading for the full story.
Why it matters
While the story is only speculation as of yet, the scenario that Renault might develop a new engine for the Alpine is not that far-fetched. After all, this new sports car is supposed to go against the likes of the Porsche Cayman and Alfa Romeo 4C and dropping a new engine behind the seats would definitely look better than simply reusing one of the existing four-bangers in either the Megane or Clio RS models. What’s more, a new powerplant specifically developed for this rear-engined, RWD car — somewhat of a novelty for modern-day, street-legal Renaults — would allow the brand to deliver a more focused sports car. Also, with up to 296 horsepower at its disposal, the Alpine could prove to be a worthy competitor for the base Porsche Cayman.
If this report proves to be true, Renault is on the right path to reviving Alpine as a full-fledged sports-car manufacturer. Until further notice, this sounds like very exciting news!
Find out more about the upcoming Renault Alpine in our speculative review here.