This smart little coupé, designed by Jean Rédelé, was the first to bear the Alpine brand, which would prove to be a force to be reckoned with in rallies worldwide.
The first motorsport performance car
The son of a Renault dealer in Dieppe, Jean Rédelé was in a good position to indulge his passion for motor sport in the early 1950s. At the wheel of standard and 1063 versions of the 4 CV, he collected one win after another, including a class victory at the 1952 Mille Miglia, where he teamed up with Louis Pons, and a 2nd place overall finish at the 1954 Tour de France! But Jean Rédelé’s dream was to create a small sports car for France using standard parts.
A great sports car, and a brilliant career
Although a good car, the 4 CV was too heavy and hardly aerodynamic. Rédelé would ultimately meet the Chappe brothers, coachbuilders in Saint-Maur who were already familiar with plastic techniques. Thus, in 1955, Alpine A106 was born. Equipped with a polyester body on a 4 CV platform, the coupé was named in honour of one of Jean Rédelé victories at the Coupe des Alpes, paired with the number 106 taken from the 4 CV project.
Alpine A106 was cleverly designed and easy to handle. It would eventually receive a 5-speed gearbox and various engines carried over from Dauphine. Its early rally successes would herald a promising future under the Berlinette Alpine name.