The Alpine F1 team has launched its new car for the 2024 F1 season. It’s called the A524 and it represents a drastic overhaul compared to last year’s car, as the team continues to try and progress towards the front of the grid.
Touted as a ‘brand-new concept’ by Alpine, the most notable changes on this new car for 2024 car are the slim-line front wing flaps and the chiselled but wider side pods. The nose and airbox are also noticeably wider, while the bodywork around the rear of the car, particularly the scalloping around the side pods, looks to be far more aggressive on the A524.
Speaking during the online launch event, which also included the unveiling of the new Alpine A424 Hypercar set to compete in the World Endurance Championship this year, Alpine F1 Team’s Technical Director Matt Harman said the development process began in late 2022, and that this is a “brand new car from front to back. Only the steering wheel survived”
While we can’t see from these initial first looks, it also sounds as though a substantial amount of work has been done to the floor of the A524, which is obviously a major element of these ground-effect-era cars.
Extensive work has taken place at the rear of the car, too. The exhaust has been integrated into the rear suspension, while the battery packs have been shifted rearwards for an adjustment in weight distribution.
Harman said: “The A524 approach has been aggressive but deliberate in the fact we are creating a wider scope to add performance to the car. We have really focused on learning and reacting to what we have learnt rather than on results.
“We have pushed some elements to the limit and, in some cases, beyond that. That is all in line with our approach and exactly what we have set out to achieve in progressing this project to the best possible level.”
Drivers Esteban Ocon and Pierre Gasly return to drive for Alpine in 2024, and both will be keen to see if this car can deliver a substantial performance improvement over last year’s disappointment.
“It goes without saying that I am super excited for the season and I cannot wait to jump back in the car and go racing again.” Ocon said. “This time of the year is exciting as it is the moment we see what the team has produced.
As a driver, it’s a goosebumps moment when you jump in a new car for the first time and release the pit limiter. That time is close now with the A524 and I really cannot wait to get started.”
Gasly added: ““I would say that I am in a much better place right now than this time 12 months ago. I know exactly all the people I’m working with; I know all the processes and how to get the best out of those around me and out of myself.
“It is nice to have continuity and building on the foundations that we created last year. I’m feeling confident with the team I have around me. We have all been developing over the last year.”
2024 Alpine F1 livery
One disappointing aspect of this new car is the livery, which sadly follows a familiar pattern in 2024 which majors on bare carbon fibre in place of paint. This Alpine ‘livery’ we use that word almost laughingly at this point, is possibly the worst of the bunch so far, in that it really does take the idea of weight reduction to a new level.
Ultimately, the problem is not with the designers, we’re sure they’d rather be splashing a whole lot more colour on these cars, too, but for the time being at least, it looks as though F1 is going to be an incredibly lacklustre sport to look at from an aesthetic point of view.
We will add that there is a pink version of this livery as there was last year, but it has also sadly suffered the same fate.