It’s unusual to know quite so much about the whole life cycle of a sports car, both past and future, as we already do about the Alpine A110.
We know, for instance, that while the first examples were delivered in mainland Europe in 2017, the last will be made sometime in early 2024, before the firm’s Dieppe factory is repurposed for production of its all-new family of electric Alpine models.
There is to be an electric successor to the current A110 developed alongside Lotus, of course, but also a performance version of the Renault 5 electric hatchback and a slightly bigger electric crossover coupé.
Just which of those cars will be made at Dieppe, and which elsewhere, remains to be seen, but it’s a safe bet that there won’t be room for combustion-engined cars there any longer. The clock is clearly ticking for the piston-engined A110, then.
It has already spawned a number of special editions, not to mention a full hat-trick of motorsport versions (Cup, GT4 and Rally). But, on the eve of the arrival of a facelifted A110, we are now taking the chance to run the road test rule over what, in principle, looks like the definitive version of the pre-facelift car: the Légende GT.
This model is a chimaera of a kind: an A110 with the softer chassis settings of the mid-range Légende derivative but the uprated 288bhp engine, brakes and sports exhaust of the track-day-ready A110 S (a car whose firmer suspension and more purposeful execution haven’t been taken to quite as keenly in this parish as simpler, freer-flowing versions of the A110).