By on March 10, 2017

Alpine A110

In the immortal words of ex-fighter pilot and Boeing 707 rescuer Ted Striker, “What a pisser.”

The resurrected Alpine A110, which never seemed like it had much of a chance of making it stateside, is officially barred from American driveways. Renault’s retro, mid-engined performance stimulated saliva glands when it debuted last year as a near-match concept car, leading some to dream that a French alternative to Porsche’s Cayman could become a U.S. reality.

The late Charles de Gaulle once said that France has no friends, only interests. Well, France isn’t interested in making this American dream come true.

“At the moment we are not planning on selling the A110 in the U.S.,” Alpine CEO Bernard Ollivier told Left Lane News at the Geneva Motor Show this week.

Ollivier’s comment shouldn’t surprise anyone, as Renault hasn’t had an automotive presence in the U.S. since its 1980s dalliance with AMC. Even before this week, there had been exactly zero hints of a stateside foray. Unless, of course, the automaker’s silence hid its true intentions.

“Re-launching the brand is a big project,” the CEO said. “Right now we’re focusing on markets like Europe and Japan.”

The Alpine brand took a dirt nap in 1995, and subsequent attempts to bring the storied division back from the dead fell flat. It was parent company Renault’s decision to return the brand to prominence by recreating its most famous model, the former rally champion A110.

Weighing just over 2,400 pounds, the nearly all-aluminum A110’s sports a turbocharged 1.8-liter inline-four that’s good for 250 horsepower and 236 lb-ft of torque. Zero to 62 mph — not that you’re likely to ever experience such a dash — clocks in at 4.5 seconds.

Because of Ollivier’s loaded wording — “At the moment…” — faint hope probably still burns in many hearts.

[Image: Renault]

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