This summer, the Alpine workshop is busy rising to the challenge of fielding an entry in the premier category of the FIA World Endurance Championship, which includes the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The Alpine A424_β’s engine has been put through the dynos over several months and is nearing its final configuration, thanks to the collaboration with Mecachrome. The single-turbocharged 3.4-litre V6, which develops the regulated 500 kW (675 bhp) and is coupled to an Xtrac gearbox, recently arrived at Oreca’s workshops to be fitted on the first A424 chassis. First fire-up was on Wednesday 5 July at 12:15.
Meanwhile, the team completed their first simulator sessions, working to confirm the coherence of the car’s simulated model, onboard software and tyres before conducting a realistic analysis of its preliminary settings ready for the first outing. The sessions included a test of racing procedures: configuration, data, telemetry and communications.
215 days to go...
The rest of the summer will be devoted to the initial phases of the A424’s development, starting with two shakedown sessions. The first will take place in early August to ensure all systems work according to plan. The second shakedown will take place with the bodywork in its initial configuration.
A first test session will follow, then a series of tests during the second half of the year on several reference tracks, including Circuit Paul Ricard, Motorland Aragón, Jerez and Portimão. Together, Oreca, Mecachrome and Philippe Sinault’s Signatech team will be overseeing the Hypercar’s development, improving reliability and performance week after week. It’s now a race against the clock to get the A424 ready in the 215 days left until its maiden outing at the 1,812-kilometre race in Qatar on 2 March 2024.
Bruno Famin, VP Alpine Motorsports: “We are really looking forward to seeing the Alpine A424 on track for the first time. It will really come to life after months of hard work behind the scenes by the Alpine Racing teams alongside our partners. The programme is proceeding according to plan, with the first fire-up and our first simulator sessions. We are now entering a phase where the target is to understand our package so that we can fine-tune it, improve its reliability, optimise it in all areas and evaluate our different technical options. The steps we have already taken were only the first milestones, and the bulk of the work remains. The Alpine Racing and Signatech teams will use all their recognised skills to launch this development process over the summer and beyond.”