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Our Cars: Au revoir Alpine

2 weeks ago

Writer:

Dan Prosser | Ti co-founder

Date:

3 August 2022

We wandered out of the body shop, into the assembly hall and there it was, suspended in mid-air – my Thunder Grey Alpine A110, the first brand new car I’d bought. Only moments ago its engine had been raised into its body (they call that part the ‘marriage’ – never let it be said there isn’t any romance in car manufacturing these days) and as I walked over to it, the car’s wheels were being offered up to its hubs. 

This was September 2019 and I was the first A110 customer who’d been invited to the factory in Dieppe to see their car being assembled. I watched it travel down the line, seeing its steering wheel attached and bits of interior trim snapped into place. I took photographs with it, signed the rear bumper support and, I’m sorry to say, gave it a quick hug.

How strange it was to travel to Alpine Centre Manchester four weeks later and spy the very same car waiting for me in the showroom, hiding beneath a black cotton cover. It had covered 25 miles in that time, most of those during the short road test that all new A110s are subject to after rolling off the line. Sitting there on the spotless white floor, my car looked so immaculate it almost seemed a shame to drive it outside. I knew its condition would deteriorate and never be quite the same again the moment I pointed its nose through the sliding glass doors. I drove home so cautiously you’d have thought I had a newborn in the passenger seat.

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