Alpine unveiled the Alpenglow concept at the 2022 Paris Motor Show, a prototype that represents the brand’s future design and sustainable innovation directions. Alpine’s research into hydrogen-powered combustion engines for sports cars is embodied in this model, which serves as the “mother of all future Alpines.” The Alpine Alpenglow Hy4 is a genuine rolling lab designed as a racing car with a carbon monocoque and a turbocharged 2.0-litre 4-cylinder engine that develops 340 bhp. The car debuted during the recent Total-Energies 6 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps Endurance Race and will make demonstration runs during the 24 Hours of Le Mans this June.

Under the Alpine Alpenglow carbon bonnet is a 2.0-litre inline 4-cylinder turbocharged development engine delivering 340 bhp. It is fuelled by hydrogen with direct injection at 40 bar pressure and water injection to reduce NOx emissions. It can reach a maximum of 7,000 rpm and is coupled to a sequential racing gearbox with a centrifugal clutch. The performance is comparable to the petrol equivalent, with a top speed of approximately 270 km/h.

Hydrogen can burn at a much more comprehensive range of concentrations, from 4% to 76%, with both lean and rich mixtures. In all cases, abnormal combustion must be avoided, which means preparing a homogeneous mixture and controlling the temperature in the combustion chamber.

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The adaptation work carried out on the Alpenglow engine Hy4 has contributed to enriching the expertise of Alpine Racing engineers in the development of a new Alpine engine entirely designed to be hydrogen-powered, with the presentation of a second rolling version before the close of 2024.

The Alpine Alpenglow Hy4 recently hit the track at Spa-Francorchamps, with Belgian Guillaume De Ridder behind the wheel. De Ridder is a unique driver, as he is not only a rallycross champion, but also an engineer at Alpine Racing. His career has been quite atypical, starting with years of motor racing in a variety of disciplines such as karting, circuit racing and rallying. It all culminated in his recent achievement of winning the 2021 FIA RX2e rallycross title.

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