The UK Sports Cars Showroom

Renault Alpine A310 V6 Phase 1, 1980, Lotus/DeLorean development car 3 of 7.


Renault Alpine A310 V6 Phase 1, 1980, Lotus/DeLorean development car 3 of 7.    LHD Alpine 310 with a very interesting history.  This is one of 7 Alpines purchased by DeLorean with Lotus Cars Ltd. in a collaboration to develop the DMC 12 and refine the Lotus Esprit.  Lotus had input on chassis, suspension and body moulds on the A310.  4 Galaxy Grey (light blue metallic) cars were specially ordered from Alpine to DeLorean in 1978 to include the modified fuel injected engine as opposed to the normally aspirated carb version (Chassis No. 45121 – 45124) This car however is an earlier chassis number (44292) which was possibly bought before the batch of 4 cars.  It is fitted with Bosch fuel injection and was possibly the test bed car used before ordering the 4 custom built fuel injected cars direct from Alpine.  The fuel injected engines of the 3 cars not directly ordered from Alpine were fitted by DeLorean at the factory in Dunmurry. There is a small metallic plaque bonded to the sump of this car labelled DL003.  6 of these vehicles are known, the 4 ordered by DeLorean (1 of which is in Australia).  This car is in the U.K., 1 car known of in France, one other (probably DL001) has allegedly been destroyed by fire.  It is reposted that the engines on the development cars may have been modified to a larger capacity than the normal PRV V6 from 2.7 to 2.9 litres as then used in the DMC 12.   This is confirmed on DL002 (cassis 45660 built in 1979)  and the owner lives in France.

Over 200 engineers worked in the DMC project both at Hethel and in Dunmurray, Ireland.  I remember driving my Lotus Elan+2 to the factory during this period and had a tour around the site and saw the DeLorean being fettled and distinctly remember seeing a broom-handle being used to keep the gull-wing driver’s door open!

Though registered in 1980, this car was built in 1978 (chassis 44292).  This car sits on unique wheels specific to this vehicle (a legacy of the Lotus/DeLorean chassis and suspension development.  It is important that these wheels are retained with this vehicle for historic reasons.  It is believed that the 15” wheels were used as opposed to the normal 13” wheels on A310’s as part of the development program (15” wheels on the DMC 12). It has fully adjustable shock absorbers.   According to another owner of one of these development vehicles, this one is by far the best handling and is know in the Alpine A310 world via its previous owner Milton Holland.

The car has recently passed its MOT test in the U.K. after being fettled in our workshops.  It drives very well indeed in all departments, with its smooth and willing V6 engine.  Original leather interior with plenty of character.   Delivery anywhere Worldwide.

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