Those of you of a certain age will remember when the concept of the hot hatch first appeared back in the late 1970s. By the mid-80s there were a few contenders for the best hot hatch and one of the earliest claims came from the Renault 5 Alpine Renault 5 Alpine. It seems the spirit of the sporty Renault 5 is alive and well and ready to embrace the 21st century. Rebadged and updated as a full EV, the Alpine A290 is aiming to take the hot hatch to a whole new level.
The pictures you’re looking at are from the concept models so things like the central driving position are unlikely to make it beyond the drawing board. The aggressive styling, numerous air inlets, and the overall look will probably survive into production though.
What’s also likely is that production models will feature the Renault E-Tech system rather than the multiple motors found in the concept car. Renault hasn’t confirmed anything yet but given that same system was tweaked from 220bhp to 240bhp and squeezed into a one off A110 coupe, it’s possible the A290 will do likewise. That should make it sporty enough to help you recapture your youth.
The Alpine A290 is being heralded as the first of three fully-electric sports cars to appear in Renault’s “future dream garage”. Which got us thinking, what other performance EVs might warrant a place in your dream garage alongside the Alpine hot hatch?
Audi RS e-tron GT
The Audi e-tron GT is the sister car to the Porsche Taycan wrapped in a different body. There will be two versions of e-tron GT, the best of which will undoubtedly be the full-bore RS e-tron GT.
Four-wheel drive, the same two-speed gearbox as the Taycan to maximise acceleration off the line, and a 93kWh battery as standard should offer a big chunk of performance. The RS version gets 590bhp – rising to 637bhp when you hit the boost button – making it jarringly quick. 0-62mph in 3.3 seconds and a top speed of 155mph should put a smile on your face.
Maserati GranTurismo Folgore
When it comes to adding style to your dream garage look no further than Maserati’s first foray into the EV world. This fabulously gorgeous and highly desirable four-seater coupe boasts a badge that evokes an illustrious history.
The EV version – there’s also a couple of V6 options for the more traditional dream garage – features one motor at the front and two for the rear and an 83kWh battery. Each motor actually produces around 400bhp but unfortunately the battery isn’t up to handling over 1200bhp. Maserati has done the sensible thing and limited the power, although we’re not really sure “limited” means much when it still offers 750bhp.
We’ve been waiting for the much-anticipated Tesla Roadster since it was first revealed in 2017. Rumours suggest it will finally go into production this year so if you want to add a two-seater sports car to your garage you might not have to dream for much longer.
The second-generation Roadster was previously delayed due to the development of the firm’s new tri-motor powertrain and advanced battery technology. According to Tesla, the updated drivetrain will give the Roadster a 0-60mph time of 1.9sec and a top speed of 250mph while somehow still offering a range in excess of 600 miles. What a combo!
If money is no object - why would it be in a dream garage - there’s only one possible option to take pride of place. The Pininfarina name is already legendary in the automotive design world and now it’s become a fully-fledged car maker. The Pininfarina Battista promises to be the pinnacle of EV performance, which is only to be expected from a £2m hyper car.
Not only has it been styled by the company responsible for some of the world’s most beautiful automotive shapes, but its electric drivetrain also makes it one of the most powerful. With 1876bhp – no, that’s not a typo – it can sprint from 0-62mph in less than two seconds and from 0-186mph in less than 12 seconds.
If you’re building a dream garage you may as well dream big.
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