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Ferrari 330 P4
Scale 1/24
Kit Manufacturer
Detail Sets None
Year 1978
Driver Didier Pironi (Fra) & J.P. Jassaud (Fra)
Event 1978 Le Mans 24hr
Paint Zero Paints Renault Yellow
Date Completed November 2022
Additions Scratch built interior, corrected side air inlets, replaced air vents on the top of the arches and rear cowl. Working hinges added to the clear cowl over the cockpit.
Box Art boxart

The Renault funded, Alpine designed A442 was a Sports Prototype GT car specifically developed for the 24 Hours of Le Mans race. First entering competitive use in 1976 the car raced in 1977 and finally, in the 1978 season, achieved it's aim and, in the hands of Frenchmen Didier Pironi and Jean-Pierre Jaussaud won at Le Mans. Achieving their goal Renault subsequently withdrew from sports car racing, instead re-focussing their efforts into Formula One.

The A442 was a direct evolution of the successful Alpine A440 and title-winning A441 models. However, unlike the previous cars, the A442's 2.0L Renault-Gordini powerplant boasted a large Garrett turbocharger, pushing power output to 490 bhp. Over the next three years this would increase to well over 500 bhp. The A442's competition debut was at the Mugello 1000km event in March 1975, driven by Jabouille and Larrousse. With an undeveloped turbo added to the Renault engine, the car took a surprise win in its very first race. Despite huge investment from Renault the car was beset with mechanical problems and failed to win again in 1976 and throughout 1977.

Finally at the 1978 24 Hours of Le Mans event, Renault's huge development program paid off. The works team entered three cars: an old A442, renamed A442A; the bubble-canopied A442B; and the A443. The development work carried out during 1977 meant that Renault could finally compete with the all conquering and dominant Porsche 936 turbo cars with the two manufacturers sharing the first four rows of the grid. From the start, the A443 was the class of the field until the 18th hour when engine failure saw the car knocked out, this was the second Renault retirement, after the Bell/Jarier A442A works car had suffered transmission failure at the half-way point. However, Pironi and Jaussaud in the A442B were well placed to inherit the lead and the pairing held on for the final few hours, finishing four laps ahead of the second-placed Porsche. Jabouille took fastest lap at 3:34 in the A443. After the chequered flag Pironi was too exhausted to climb up to the podium, where Jaussaud took the trophy alone.

The Tamiya kit of this car is a curbside motorized version - almost toy like, and therefore a considerable amount of scratch building will be required to bring this up to standard especially in the cockpit area. There are no aftermarket sets available for this kit and so any extra details will all be scratch built.

Alpine Renault A442B Gallery
Click above for build and completed pictures

Ferrari 330 P4
Alpine Renault A442B - 1978 Le Mans 24hr
Ferrari 330 P4
Alpine Renault A442B - 1978 Le Mans 24hr
Ferrari 330 P4
Alpine Renault A442B - 1978 Le Mans 24hr
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