Renault’s Alpine division has introduced a close-to-production concept called Vision during an event held in Monaco.
The Vision gives us an accurate preview of what the first series-produced Alpine of the 21st century will look like. It’s heavily inspired by the Celebration concept that was shown during last year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans race, but it adopts LED lights up front, a less aggressive-looking front bumper, thin tail lamps with an X-shaped signature, and a mid-mounted exhaust outlet. However, heritage-laced styling cues such as a sloping hood with three creases and a wrap-around rear window have been carried over from the Celebration to the Vision.
The Vision also provides us with our first look at the upcoming coupe’s cockpit. While the exterior is unmistakably retro, designers have given the coupe a state-of-the-art cabin with a configurable thin-film transistor (TFT) screen in lieu of an analog instrument cluster, and a large touch screen that runs the infotainment system. Bucket seats wrapped by quilted leather, aluminum trim pieces, and carbon fiber components create a motorsport-inspired ambiance.
Technical details are still few and far between. At this point, all we know is that power comes from a turbocharged four-cylinder engine designed by Renault Sport and tuned to make enough power to send the Vision from zero to 62 mph in 4.5 seconds. In other words, the coupe should be able to give Porsche’s new flat-four-powered 718 Boxster S a run for its money. The pictures reveal that the Vision uses a push-button automatic transmission controlled by shift paddles.
Alpine openly admits the Vision concept will be toned down slightly and turned into a production model. It’s not too far-fetched to assume the coupe will make its public debut at this fall’s Paris Auto Show, and the born-again car maker has confirmed that production will kick off in Dieppe, France, early next year. Only time will tell whether the first series-produced Alpine of the 21st century will be sold on our side of the pond, or if it will remain a forbidden fruit.