Renault Alpine A 110 (1970)
Renault Alpine A 110
The Alpine A110 also known as the "Berlinette" was a sports car produced by the French manufacturer Alpine from 1961 to 1973. The A110 was powered by various Renault engines.
The Alpine A110 was introduced in 1961 as an evolution of the A108. Like other road-going Alpines the A110 made heavy use of mass-produced Renault parts. But while the A108 was designed around Dauphine components, the A110 was updated to use R8 parts. Unlike the A108 available first as a cabriolet and later as a Coupé, the A110 was delivered only with "Berlinetta" bodyworks. The main visible difference with the A108 Coupé was a restyling of the rear body that gave the car a more aggressive look. Like the A108, the A110 featured a steel backbone chassis with fiberglass body. This design was influenced by the Lotus Elan, Colin Chapman being a major source of inspiration for Alpine designers at that time.
The A110 was originally available with 1.1L R8 Major or R8 Gordini engines. The Gordini engine delivered 95 hp SAE at 6500 rpm.
The A110 achieved most of its fame in the early 1970s as a victorious rally car. After winning several rallies in France in the late 1960s with iron-cast R8 Gordini engines the car was fitted with the aluminium block Renault 16 TS engine. With two dual chamber Weber 45 carburetors the new engine was able to deliver 125 hp DIN at 6000 rpm. This allowed the production 1600S to reach a top speed of 210 km/h.
The car reached international fame during the 1970-1972 seasons competing in the newly created "International rally championship for makers", winning several events around Europe and became considered to be one of the strongest rally cars of its time. Among notable performances the car won the 1971 Monte-Carlo Rally with Swedish driver Ove Andersson.
Then in 1973, when the buy-out of Alpine by Renault was complete the International championship was replaced by a new "World rally championship for makers". Renault decided to compete in the World championship with the A110. With a team featuring Bernard Darniche, Jean-Pierre Nicolas and Jean-Luc Thérier as permanent drivers and "guest stars" like Jean-Claude Andruet (who won the Monte-Carlo that year) the A110 won in all races where the works team was entered except the Swedish Rally, making Alpine first rally World champion.
Alpine A110 was produced in Brazil under the name Interlagos, a young driver named Emerson Fittipaldi drove one in several races.
Alpine A110 was produced in Mexico under the name Dinalpin, from 1965 to 1974 by Diesel Nacional (DINA), which also produced the Renault vehicles.
Alpine A110 was also produced in Bulgaria under the name Bulgaralpine, from 1967 to 1969 by a cooperative formed between SPC Metalhim and ETO Bulet, whose collaboration also resulted in the production of the Bulgarrenault.
In 1974 the Lancia Stratos, the first car designed from scratch for Rally racing, was operational and homologated. At the same time, it was obvious that the A110 had reached the end of its development. Attempts to use fuel injection bring no performance increase. On some cars a DOHC 16-valve head was fitted to the engine but was proven unreliable. Chassis modification like the use of an A310 double wishbone rear suspension, homologated with the A110 1600SC also failed to increase performance. On the international stage the Stratos proved to be the "ultimate weapon" making the A110 as well as many other rally cars soon obsolete.
The A110 was fitted with various powerplants. Here is a list of the engines used on production cars:
- A110 1100 "70" (1964-1969) 1000 VA - R8 Major (type 688) 1108 cc 66 hp SAE
- A110 1100 "100" (1965-1968) 1100 VB - R8 Gordini (type 804) 1108 cc 95 hp SAE
- A110 1300 S (1965-1971) 1300 VB - tuned R8 Gordini (type 804) 1296 cc 120 hp SAE
- A110 1300 G (1967-1971) 1300 VA - stock R8 Gordini 1300 (type 812) 1255 cc 105 hp SAE
- A110 1500 (1967-1968) - stock Lotus Europa engine (R16 block) 1470 cc 82 hp SAE
- A110 1600 (1969-1970) 1600 VA - stock R16 TS 1565 cc 92 hp SAE
- A110 1300 V85 (1969-1976) 1300 VC - R12TS 1289 cc 81 hp SAE (68 hp DIN)
- A110 1600S (1970-1973) 1600 VB - tuned R16 TS 1565 cc 138 hp SAE (125 hp DIN)
- A110 1600S (1973-1975) 1600 VC, SC - R17 TS 1605 cc 140ch SAE (126ch DIN)
- A110 1600S SI (1974-1975) 1600 VD - R17 TS 1605 cc with fuel injection 140ch SAE (127ch DIN)
- A110 1600S SX (1976-1978) - stock R16 TX (type 843) 1647 cc 93 hp DIN
Specifications A110 1600S (1970-1973)
- Engine: Renault 1565 cc Straight-4
- Power Output: 138 hp SAE (103 kW) gross (125 PS DIN (92 kW))
- Transmission: 5-Speed Manual
- Chassis: Steel backbone
- Body Panels: Fiberglass
- Weight: 1367 lb (620 kg)
- Length: 159 in (4.05 m)
- Width: 59.1 in (1.50 m)
- Wheelbase: 89.4 in (2.271 m)
- Track (Front/Rear): 48.0 in (1219 mm) / 49.2 in (1250 mm)
- Top speed: 210 km/h (130 mi/h)
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