Very few keen drivers would mourn the passing of Mercedes’ SLC (née SLK), and if the firm’s AMG-engineered successor (scooped here) doesn’t appeal to quite the same customer base, you suspect few in Stuttgart will lose any sleep over it.

In pictures: the best of Mercedes-AMG

So it just remains to be seen which way the firm will jump from a technical standpoint. Typically, unless another use for a dedicated mid-engined platform can be found, a front-engined car of one sort or another (either a downsized SL or an Audi-TT-style front transverse-engined execution) is much more likely. But if a mid-engined solution is more attractive to the GT4 motorsport fraternity, perhaps it might have legs, especially since it’d lend AMG the sporting credibility it’d need to steal Porsche’s lunch in the Cayman’s segment — something AMG boss Tobias Moers would no doubt dearly love to do.

Mercedes-AMG eyes up Porsche Cayman rival

Whatever the company decides, it should be warned against focusing obsessively on track performance with insufficient regard for what makes the likes of the Alpine A110 great: compactness, simplicity and a sense of driver reward that’s every bit as accessible and vivid on the road as it is on the circuit. 

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