We reported last month that Renault might be killing off the Alpine A110 as part of a €2 billion cost-cutting plan. However, it seems like that would not be the end of the road for the Alpine brand, which was only resurrected three years ago.
When asked by Autocar UK, Renault Chairman Jean-Dominique Senard said: “Clearly, Alpine is a beautiful brand and we do have to look very, very seriously at the future of this brand to see how it can bring added value to the group.”
One strategy under consideration is to turn the Alpine brand into an electric-only performance halo brand for Renault. The move, reportedly being strongly considered, follows Renault Group’s announcement of its major restructuring plans where the company plans to focus on the development of electric cars.
Renault Group design chief Laurens van den Acker also recently said that “it’s inevitable that we’ll electrify Alpine” in the future. While it is in part due to the tightening emissions regulations across the globe, van den Acker added: “We’re not only doing it because of the regulations. People’s expectations will shift and will push us into this direction.”
According to chairman Senard, the decision ultimately lies in the hands of incoming chief executive officer Luca De Meo, who is due to take up the role at the French carmaker in July.
During his role at Seat previously, De Meo successfully turned the Cupra name from just a performance badge into a new full-fledge “premium performance” brand that would frequently take the lead in developing certain innovations and technologies.
Given his past work, the decision to turn the Alpine brand into a pure-electric premium performance brand could bode well with De Meo. The move could allow Renault to showcase their electrification technologies in a sporting context, similar to Volkswagen’s ID.R, and ultimately compete against other premium rivals.