Grand Tourisme Alpine
The GTA project started in 1981 as a successor for the previous
model, the A310. B.E.R.E.X – Bureau D’Etudes et
de Recherches Exploratoires – based at Dieppe were commissioned
to style the new car utilising Renault running gear.
The first prototype was completed in late 1982. The first
production Alpine GTA’s were launched in France in February
1984 for the GTA GT Atmo and December 1984 for the Turbo model.
We in Britain had to wait until August 1986 for the first
right hand drive versions. Both GT and Turbo models were available
from this date.
The Alpine GT cost £19,990.00 when new, extras could
be had in the form of turbo wheels for an extra £680
and leather interior for an extra £1,050.
The Alpine Turbo cost £24,960.00 when new, and the
extra available was leather interior for £1,050.
These prices increased over the next few years until 1990
when the GT cost £24,500.00 and the Turbo £29,500.00.
Between 1986 and 1990 various modifications and extras became
available. Modifications included a sculpted bonnet as opposed
to a flat one. Split rear seats that could be folded down
to provide extra storage space. The instrument panel changed
from orange instrumentation to red. A remote control was added
to the radio. Mechanical changes that took place were the
widening of the brake discs from 20mm to 22mm. The fuel system
was changed to a double pressure relief system and the turbo
became water cooled. In 1988 the Turbo model could be had
with a catalyst (although only 3 such cars right hand drive
cars were produced. Who has these cars now?).
Factory fitted extras that now became available were leather
seats in two colours, black and tan, leather centre console,
leather dash and leather door trims. ABS became available
and also air conditioning.
In 1990 a new model was produced, this was named the Le Mans.
This car was fitted with a wide body kit, wider and bigger
wheels – 16 x 8J at the front and 17 x 10J at the rear.
The wheels were BBS look-alikes. Only 25 right hand drive
cars were produced and all were painted “Rouge Imperial”.
The cost of this car was £37,500.00. All cars were fitted
GT D500 2849cc Twin carbs 160 bhp 0-62mph: 8.0 secs. Top
speed 146 mph
TURBO D501 2458cc Turbo Injection 200 bhp 0-62 mph: 7.0 secs.
Top speed 155 mph
TURBO D502 2458cc Fitted with CAT Turbo Injection 185 bhp
0-62 mph: 7.5 secs Top speed 147 mph
LE MANS D502A 2458cc Fitted with CAT Turbo Injection 185
bhp 0-62 mph: 7.4 secs Top speed 148 mph
Production figures for each right hand drive model are as
D500 - 212
D501 - 341
D502 - 3
D502A - 26
Other GTA’s worth mentioning, although only available
in LHD, are a model made to be sold in Switzerland, this was
fitted with full emission controls e.g. a larger CAT, oxygen
sensors, a different ECU, all these extras brought the car
down to 150 brake for a turbo car.
A model was also made to be sold in America, this car was
fitted with larger bumpers, back and front, pop up headlights
as per the A610, electrically operated seats, a sunroof, extra
emission equipment thus lowering the power output to 150 brake
for a turbo car.
And last but not least, the Europa Cup cars, these were prepared
as full race cars. These cars were stripped of all trim. A
full roll cage was fitted, larger brakes installed, modified
suspension, different wheels to enable better cooling and
the engine was increased in power to over 300 bhp with a 0-60
time of 3.8 secs. And a top speed of 185 mph.