Alpine Becomes An EV Brand And Something Even Bigger Is Brewing
Alpine and Lotus join forces to create all-electric successor for the cool A110by Ciprian Florea, on LISTEN 03:33
Rumors claiming that Renault will turn Alpine into an all-electric brand have been confirmed today. The French automaker announced that the marque most famous for the A110 sports will focus on EV vehicles for the future. Renault also released a teaser image that previews three upcoming Alpine models, a small hatchback, a compact crossover, and a brand-new sports car. All are connected to charging stations, so all three will feature battery-powered electric motors. But the French also announced that the sports car will be co-developed with Lotus.
Alpine goes electric four years after its modern revival
Founded in 1955, the Alpine brand disappeared in the 1990s, mostly due to slow sales and financial problems. Renault announced plans to revive the brand in 2009 and in 2012 it revealed a partnership with Caterham for a jointly-developed sports car. Their collaboration ended in 2014, but Renault went ahead and revealed concept versions of what would become the A110, a lightweight sports car designed as spiritual successor to the car of the same name from the 1960s.
The Alpine A110 debuted in 2017, marking the brand's return to the market after more than 20 years.
Less than four years have passed and Alpine is switching over to electrification. The slow-selling A110 will probably be discontinued soon, but the French are working on an all-electric successor.
Alpine is already working on three different EVs
A teaser image shows three electric cars that Alpine is already working on. There’s a "for me" vehicle that likely depicts a small hatchback, and a "for us" models that appears to be a compact crossover. The third car is captioned "for the weekend" and it’s obviously a sports car. That’s the EV that will replaced the A110 in the lineup. While the hatchback and crossover will borrow tech from parent company Renault, the sports car will be developed in partnership with Lotus.
Alpine and Lotus will co-develop a new electric sports car
Renault’s latest business strategy release revealed that Alpine’s upcoming electric sports car will be co-developed with Lotus. This means that both companies will soon launch a performance EV on shared underpinnings, but with individual exterior designs and features.
There are no specific details about the upcoming sports car, but both companies are well-suited for the task. While Alpine benefits from technology from both Renault and the high-performance Renautsport division, Lotus is already building its own EV, the Evija supercar. The sports car will be of the lightweight variety and even though it will cost a bit more than the A110 due to the EV powertrain, it will remain on "the level of pricing" of the gasoline coupe.
"The signing of this memorandum of understanding with Lotus shows the lean and smart approach we’re implementing as part of the new Alpine brand strategy. Both brands have an amazing legacy, and we’re most excited to start this work together, from engineering tailored solutions to developing a next-generation EV sports car," said new Alpine boss Laurent Rossi.
In related news, Renault’s F1 works team has been renamed Alpine for the 2021 season in an effort to promote the brand globally through motorsport.