Alpine Unveils All-New A524 Formula 1 Car, Could Give McLaren and Aston Martin Headaches

Alpine A524 Formula 1 car 10 photos
Photo: Alpine
Alpine A524 Formula 1 carAlpine A524 Formula 1 carAlpine A524 Formula 1 carAlpine A524 Formula 1 carAlpine A524 Formula 1 carAlpine A524 Formula 1 carAlpine A524 Formula 1 carAlpine A524 Formula 1 carAlpine A524 Formula 1 car
If there’s one outfit that desperately needs to shake things up in Formula 1, it’s Alpine. The French team have long been stuck in a sort of No Man’s Land, racing ahead of all the backmarkers, while trailing top teams such as Red Bull, Ferrari and Mercedes.
In 2023, they were even surpassed by Aston Martin and McLaren, finishing the year in sixth place in the Constructors standings with 120 points – a massive 160 points shy of fifth-place Aston Martin. This was considered a major setback, seeing as how they were the fourth-best team in 2022.

Still, with the likes of Pierre Gasly and Esteban Ocon behind the wheel, the French team certainly has the talent to be more competitive. All they need is a better car.

That’s where the all-new A524 comes in, which has been redesigned with maximum potential in mind.

“The A524 approach has been aggressive but deliberate in the fact we are creating a wider scope to add performance to the car,”
explained technical director, Matt Harman.

“We have really focused on learning and reacting to what we have learnt rather than on results. [...] The project has been bold where we have focused on realizing concepts, which we aim to add to the car. We’ve built ourselves a strong platform to add performance when we can, and we have set ourselves targets to deliver those.”

Harman then went on to say that some elements were pushed to the limit, and in some cases, beyond that, which is said to be in line with their design philosophy.

From the outside looking in, I can’t say that these types of statements offer much peace of mind to weary fans, who would have probably preferred to hear more about how different of a machine this is compared to last year’s A523 race car. Aside from calling the A524 “new from front to back,” Alpine talked more about unlocking aero concepts rather than unlocking gains.

Alpine A524 Formula 1 car
Photo: Alpine
Still, reacting to facts is a good thing, rather than blindly chasing results. The French outfit set extremely bold targets for itself a few years ago, and they haven’t been able to live that down. It’s about time they started taking a more meticulous approach to adding performance to the car.

So, what exactly is new? Well, the chassis (new from the ground up), the rear suspension setup, the brake system (improved cooling), the nose and front wing, plus the floor. We obviously can’t see the latter, but it is said to be the result of “aggressive development.”

As for when we’ll be able to see the A524 on track, no later than February 20 when it’s scheduled for an initial shakedown ahead of pre-season testing (Bahrain, February 21-23).
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About the author: Sergiu Tudose
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Sergiu got to experience both American and European car "scenes" at an early age (his father drove a Ford Fiesta XR2 supermini in the 80s). After spending over 15 years at local and international auto publications, he's starting to appreciate comfort behind the wheel more than raw power and acceleration.
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