Future Models - Alpine 2017 Vision
Renault gives Alpine the thumbs up
Mountain high: The Alpine Vision concept is said to represent 80 per cent of the final design of the first Alpine production car in more than two decades.
Finally, Renault’s Alpine sub-brand to launch in 2017 with lightweight sports coupe
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17 February 2016
RENAULT has pushed the start button for its Alpine premium sportscar brand,
saying the first Alpine model, closely based on its latest lightweight,
mid-engine Vision concept coupe, will go into production by 2017.
Australia is a near certainty to get the hand-built Alpine range, with Renault
Australia saying it has had “positive responses” to its request to launch the
standalone marque here.
The unnamed two-seat sports coupe will be the first production road car to
carry the Alpine badge in more than two decades, but not the last. Ultimately,
at least three models, including an SUV, are expected to carry the Alpine badge.
According to parent company Renault, the first Alpine model will be 80 per cent
based on the latest Vision concept, and will be built at the Renault Sport
factory at Dieppe, in north-west France, for global markets.
Announcing the long-awaited decision by Renault Group and unveiling the latest
Vision concept, Renault-Nissan Alliance chairman and CEO Carlos Ghosn said
motorsports and sportscars were deeply rooted in the Renault DNA.
“Earlier this month we announced our return to Formula One with a Renault team,
and today we are announcing Alpine,” he said.
“This is an exciting next step in our strategy to leverage talent and
technology between road and track, and we look forward to reaching new
customers in the sport premium cars segment.”
Renault chose Monte Carlo – site of some of Alpine’s most memorable motorsport
performances – for the announcement, confirming that one of the target
parameters of the first new Alpine production car in more than 20 years will
have an acceleration target of less than four seconds for the 0-100km/h dash.
Like the Vision concept, the Alpine coupe is expected to carry design cues
lifted from the best-known historic Alpine, the A110 Berlinette, including the
big, round driving lights that originally were included for competition
The production powertrain is yet to be confirmed, but no one would be surprised
if the production car gets an all-new Renault Sport-crafted four-cylinder turbo
mated with a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission.
Low weight will be a key factor in the vehicle’s development by “a small team
of passionate experts within Groupe Renault”, the company says.
Heading up the team as Alpine managing director will be Dutch-born marketer
Michael van der Sande, who most recently was Renault Group marketing senior
vice president. Before that, he had broad experience across a wide range of
motor companies, including Nissan, Rolls-Royce, Bentley, Harley-Davidson, Tesla
and Aston Martin.
“All of us at Alpine are proud to have been entrusted with the task of bringing
back Alpine to sports car lovers around the world,” Mr van der Sande said.
“Our job is to faithfully re-interpret famous Alpines of the past and project
Alpine into the future with a beautifully designed, agile, high-performance
“Our Alpine Vision show car is immediately recognisable as an Alpine yet
resolutely modern. We look forward to revealing the production model later this
The design will be led by long-time Renault stylist Antony Villain, whose
credits include the current Clio and Captur.
Renault says the team will develop the new car over the next 12 months, but
Alpine has promised we will see it before the end of 2016.
The vehicle will go on sale first in Europe, with other markets to follow. As
the Renault Sport Dieppe plant is relatively small, the showroom roll out might
Renault Australia corporate communications manager Emily Fadeyev told GoAuto
today that the Australian plans for Alpine had yet to be confirmed.
As well, the factory is expected to continue production of the Clio RS in
parallel with the new Alpine range.
However, she said Renault Australia had high hopes that Alpine would get the
green light for this market.
“We have expressed a very strong interest for Alpine for Australia, and we have
had very positive responses so far,” she said.
Ms Fadayev said because Alpine had not yet been confirmed for Australia, not
timing had been given.
Originally, the Alpine project was a joint-venture between Renault and the
United Kingdom’s Caterham, but Renault bought out Caterham’s half in 2014.