The formula is simple: take your sports car, then raise it up with extra ground clearance and a wider kit for big, chunky tires. You know it. The entire vintage scene in LA knows it. And Alpine knows it, with the new Alpine A110 SportsX concept.
If you don’t know Alpine, it’s like a French cross between Lotus and Porsche. Its iconic car is the rally legend the A110 that dominated in the 1960s and early ‘70s, jacked up and super wide for going fast on super rough terrain. We don’t get the new mid-engine turbo-four A110 here, but it’s not unlike the Porsche 718, only lighter.
This is just a little internal design exercise from the Alpine team, according to the company’s social media, displayed at the Festival Auto in France. The exact specs of the thing are that the body is 80mm wider (1.5 inches per side) and with a 60mm lift (not quite 2.5 inches).
Nominally, the concept is for skiing, which sort of makes sense since Alpine has a lot of history with running events like the wintry Monte Carlo Rally up in the mountains, and also Alpine associates with Alain Prost’s ice racing circuit in the French Alps.
It’s charmingly anti-track performance. It’s not slammed to the ground for better weight transfer and tighter roadholding. It’s up for better clearance, more capability, more fun.
It all kind of reminds me of BMW’s X Coupe concept of 2001. If there’s ever a time to lead the charge to bring this stuff into production, it’s now. SUVs are boring! What’s next but lifted sports cars?