Alpine’s A290 EV Has a Built-In, ‘Gran Turismo’ Style Driving Instructor

Another win over its Renault 5 sibling is a multi-link rear suspension, which promises a pointy front end, while Alpine-engineered front and rear anti-roll bars should add further balance and poise.

Alpine has also spent time perfecting the feel of the brake pedal, promising an “imperceptible natural transition between regenerative braking at the beginning of the pedal travel and hydraulic braking.” Large Brembo units do much of the heavy lifting here, but we’ll let you know whether this has been a success when we review the EV properly.

One stat as a result of this weight loss and superior brake setup is impressive, however: This EV can drop from 62 mph to a standstill in just three seconds—so interested parties should perhaps start training up their neck muscles.

Interior Tech

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There are other ways Alpine is looking to engage the driver. There are four driving modes: Save, Normal, Sport, and Personal, the last of which allows a customized throttle response, steering assistance, and “Alpine Driving Sound.” The latter is a newly developed system that accentuates the noise coming from the electric motor and pumps it through the audio system into the car. So, while there’s still trickery going on here, at least the noise generated isn’t entirely fake.

Speaking of audio, Alpine has patriotically partnered with Devialet, a respected French audiophile brand, for its sound system. An optional-extra package, it consists of a 615-watt amplifier, a 30-cm subwoofer, and nine loudspeakers. After a very brief listening session from the back seat, I was left impressed by the clarity of sound and the deep but not overpowering bass. It’s definitely a box to tick on the spec list. As a side note, if you are taller than 5’9″, you will struggle for leg room in the back.

If you find yourself behind the wheel, you’ll notice the two large screens, which have become the standard for all new EVs. There’s a 10.1-inch central screen angled toward the driver which displays the Google-based, but attractively Alpine-skinned, operating system. And for those who value tactility, there are a number of physical buttons below it to control the heating and air conditioning. But anyone hoping for Renault 5 Turbo-style speedometers and rev counters will be disappointed with the screen that replaces them.

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