Alpine A524 Technical Analysis: A new platform with 2025 in mind

Jaden Diaz
7 Feb, 2024

Alpine kicked off its 2024 season today with the official presentations of its Formula 1 and WEC programmes. Also present in Enstone was the Renault Group’s CEO, Luca De Meo, and the CEO of Alpine – Philippe Krief.

It was Bruno Famin who presented both projects in front of the media, sponsors and guests, with technical director Matt Harman going into more detail on the philosophy of the A524, the car with which the BWT Alpine F1 Team will take to the track in Bahrain at the end of this month.

Alpine A524: work has been done to expand the operating window 

The new season is the right opportunity to erase the disappointments of the past year. This is true both in terms of the performance and Alpine’s internal structure.

Szafnauer, Fry and Permane were all significant exits last year. The A524 has already carried out the classic fire-up in January.

The team is now busy on the dynamic benches for the classic tests that are carried out in preparation for Bahrain.

It will be a very different car compared to the previous one. Most of the changes concern the floor underneath the car – rather than the exterior.

“There are big changes on the A524. It is a completely new car from front to rear, born to maximize the potential of the A523,” according to technical director Matt Harman.

Alpine

Innovations were necessary to increase Alpine’s operating window. Compared to most other teams, the French outfit has very little room for manoeuvre.

“We found the A523 was operating within a very narrow window. This was a weakness because it meant we were limited in what we could exploit with the machine.”

Harman repeated the word ‘potential’ several times in his statements.

“For the A524, we aim to broaden the operating window to give us a better opportunity to maximise its potential.

“For this reason, we rigorously analysed the aerodynamic concepts we wanted to move towards on this car. With the aim of achieving greater aerodynamic freedom, unlocking their potential to the maximum.”

Alpine A524: A new base to increase performance and potential

The frame has been completely redesigned and lightened. To save further weight, many areas of the A524 were left in bare carbon, hence the very black livery. 

Important work has been carried out on the rear suspension, which will still remain the push-rod type introduced on the A523.

At the front, the 2024 car of the French team will not have the pull-rod suspension, as done (at least) by Sauber and Racing Bulls, but the decision was made to optimize the mechanics of last season.

A new cooling system has been integrated “to give us the ability to operate more efficiently in each event,” Harman explained.

Efficiency is somewhat of the watchword of Alpine’s 2024 project. The work carried out on the braking system is also important.

“We have completed a lot of work on our braking system, particularly on brake thermal management. As there is performance to be extracted from heat transmission through the system,” explained the Australian engineer.

He referred to the importance of tyre management. A braking system for Alpine is mixed, given that it uses Brembo callipers and pumps, while as regards the friction material, such as discs, it relies on Carbon Industrie solutions.

Last season’s A523 was considered by the French team’s technicians as a car that had reached the end of development. These limitations prevented further performance from being extracted.

From here, the A524 project was born. It began at the end of the 2022 season, continuing with some experiments during 2023.

“This allowed us to highlight the areas where we aim to improve the aerodynamics and vehicle dynamics of the car,” said Harman/

Alpine

The French team’s 2024 car presents a new platform to increase its performance. Moreover, it should increase their prospects for the end of this regulatory cycle in 2025.

“The project was bold, and we focused on creating concepts that we would then add to the car.

“All the changes you will see, in fact, have been made to be able to increase performance in the next two seasons. Even if some compromises have been reached on the achievement of certain objectives, which we have pushed to the limit,” confirmed Alpine’s TD.

He then continued – “The floor is a big differentiator in the performance of these cars. We went for an aggressive approach to development in that area to cover many different concepts and really express ourselves.

“We also changed the front wing and nose to manage the airflow at the front of the car.” 

Author: Piergiuseppe Donadoni

Translation: Jaden Diaz-Ndisang

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