Guest Feature: Norev’s Alpine A110, by Joep Verbeeten…

I am so excited for this new series on Lamley.  

This blog has always been about my collection.  For the most part I showcase models I like and collect.  That means heavy doses of Hot Wheels and Matchbox, with Tomica Limited Vintage, Kyosho, Auto World, a growing M2 and Majorette presence, and a smattering of other brands.

But there is so much more out there.  I surely can’t collect them all, and even moreso I don’t know enough to write about them.  But there are many of you out there that can.

So I am putting the word out that I am looking for guest writers who can feature elements of the diecast collecting world that I can’t.  That could mean Hot Wheels Redlines, Matchbox Regular Wheels, and of course, all those other brands out there.

My first request went to the Live and Let Diecast community.  LaLD is a group that every diecast collector should be a part of.  There is a diverse group of collectors reporting on a diverse group of models and brands.  And I am thankful a lot of them use Lamley as a resource.   

So I asked some of the members there if they would like to write a feature for us here on Lamley.  To give us a little something about an element of the collecting world that I haven’t written on.  

Joep Verbeeten (Jobjoris on LaLD) was one of the first people to respond, and I am thrilled he did.  Joep is a great photographer (qualification #1) and a Norev collector.  That is a great combo.  His submission is below, and I liked it so much I have asked him to make this a series, and he obliged.  

So yes, this request goes out to everyone.  If you want to be a guest writer here on Lamley, please email me at with your idea.  I cannot guarantee that your feature will be accepted, but I want to hear what you think.  You can use Joep’s excellent submission as an example.

There is so much cool stuff out there, and I hope to learn a lot moving forward.  I hope this is just the start.

(Thanks Joep.)

I don’t think I’ve seen many Norev 3” casts at the Lamley Group. So when word got out on Live and Let Diecast that the Lamley Group was looking for some guest posts I hopped on immediately. I know the Lamley Group loves Majorettes, so let us look at another French brand and one of my favorite 3” casts of the last few years: Norev’s Alpine A110.

I’m sure many of you know the history of one of the world’s best looking cars ever. At least: that’s what the Alpine A110 is to me. And the fact alone the value of these in real life have sky-rocketed the last 10+ years: I suspect I’m not the only one.

Norev has both a “Retro” and a “Racing Retro” line, the blue Alpine is from the first and the pink RTL-liveried one is from the latter. At first I thought it to be a kid’s car meant for the female kind it being this ‘Hello Kitty’-pink. But this actually was a thing back in the days:

And team Aseptogyl had a reason for going for pink: Almost certainly unique, the team employed female drivers exclusively. And with a 10th position overall and winner of Ladies Cup of the 1972 Monte-Carlo Rally they proved to be quite capable.

There was one A110 quicker that rally, the A110 of Bob Neyret. Owner of… the company that actually produced Aseptogyl. And owner of the rally team. But he drove a blue A110 privately. The ultimate glory for the A110 was yet to come though: the first ever WRC season of 1973. In which Alpine won the world championship. With 6 wins in 13 rallies. After that rallying would become all about specially designed rallycars, with the first one knocking at the door being the Lancia Stratos.

But let’s stop lecturing here and start concentrating on the models. There is a blue A110 in racing livery as well in the Racing Retro line, one I haven’t found yet. Fact is very little cars in the 3” and 1/64 market come in real life liveries. The design of those wheels is very good, I just wish someone at Norev had realized these A110s were equiped with much wider tires as the tires look a bit… Pathetic?

The bumpers are casted and painted on, that is something that could be a bit better as well as the silver paint clearly ended up on the non-bumber cast as well. But that’s all. Maybe one could have issues with the fact it is a 3”-diecast. Resulting in a 1/55 scale as the 1:1-car is rather small.

And it always amazed me Mattel hadn’t yet jumped on the A110. Hugely popular in Europe and Japan I’d expect Mattel being able to sell this one easily as well. And the Hot Wheels R5 Turbo in the Boulevard series wasn’t that unpopular either?

Then again, getting these Norevs probably isn’t that hard. In Europe. They do about 4 euros and if you ask me if they’re worth it: Every single penny. Norev’s line-up is totally different, lots of French cars. Lots of casts available through real-car dealers as well: Citroën, Peugeot and Renault all sell Norev 3” casts of 1:1 cars in their showroom. In their own boxes.

Actually, there’s German car makers getting some of their merchandising from Norev as well. Opel, Volkswagen and Mercedes-Benz all get (some of) their smaller casts from France.

So next time you’re strolling ebay look for some 3” Norevs. I’m sure they won’t disappoint. I’m sure Alpine won’t disappoint us either when they reveal there next 1:1, can’t wait for that to happen! C’est ça, Bon Week-End!

12 Replies to “Guest Feature: Norev’s Alpine A110, by Joep Verbeeten…”

  1. Awesome! I don't think there's anyone more qualified to be our first LaLD Ambassador to Lamley than Joep with his amazing Norev collection; I am glad to see his stunning photography featured here and am honored to have his acquaintance as he is one of the best diecast collectors in our community!

  2. No worries, both the 205 and that R5 will feature a future guest post here! Never had my hands on that Swift though, I'll see if I'll run into that one. But… I know little of that one so I won't be able to make a proper post of that.

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