Alpine plotting two midsize electric crossovers for the U.S.


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Renault Group sub-brand Alpine seems to be getting more eager about its plans for global expansion. In October 2022, group CEO Luca de Meo took an optimistic but cautious tone to journalists when discussing the chance of a return to the U.S. market. De Meo said then that an American launch wasn't under consideration, and, "The Renault Group is not in the U.S. for good reasons. It exited the U.S. twice. We need to make sure that if we make a return, it’s a successful one ... you can’t really mess up a third time. And the Alpine brand is in a rebirth, so we have a lot of things to accomplish first, to establish it as a solid, graduated brand in Europe." In November, de Meo told journalists Alpine's developing two battery-electric crossovers and it's possible the brand would expand into North America and China. This month, Automotive News reports de Meo's position is that the two coming CUVs are being developed with the U.S. market in mind, the plan being to get them here by 2028.

Alpine's got a huge ramp-up ahead, based on what we've been told. It's a Europe-only concern at the moment with just one car on sale, the A110. Last year, Alpine's roughly 140 dealers sold 3,546 units of the A110, an increase of about 33%, all of them produced in a Renault factory in northern France with a capacity of 6,000 units. This year, the automaker wants to grow its dealer body to 150 storefronts. Next year, a second model joins the lineup, the Alpine version of the all-electric Renault 5 hatchback, and Renault's eyeing an Alpine spinoff and IPO. The year after that, Alpine will release a sporty electric compact crossover thought to be called the GT. The year after that, in 2026, the second-gen battery-electric replacement for the A110 will hit the market.

By 2028, the two larger electric crossovers will go on sale at home and potentially in the U.S. and China. In all, these five products are charged with getting Alpine from 3,546 units in 2022 to de Meo's target of "north of 150,000" units by 2030. That's an average increase of 60% per year for eight years, sales outside of Europe potentially accounting for half of that.

Renault bills the Alpine 5, the crossover, and the electric A110 as the trio in its Dream Garage, teased here. They are not planned for American audiences.

The smaller crossover for the States would be about the size of the Porsche Macan, which is 186.1 inches long and 76.1 inches wide, the larger one about the size of the Porsche Cayenne Coupe, which is 194.2 inches long and 78.1 inches wide. Renault's still answering questions as basic as the platform. Within the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi alliance, Nissan's thought the most likely candidate for an architecture since Nissan makes midsize vehicles and now has a pure-electric crossover. But de Meo said partnering outside the brand is a possibility. That could mean talking to Chinese conglomerate Geely, which owns electric SUV-makers Lotus, Polestar, Volvo, and Zeekr. Renault is already in a joint venture with Geely for ICE and electrified ICE powertrain development, and the electric Alpine A110 successor is rumored to spring from a partnership with Lotus. Renault hasn't ruled out tying up with "any leading EV player," though.

We should get ideas of what's to come when the compact electric crossover debuts in 2025. Design details could trace their way back to last year's Alpineglow concept (shown at the top of this post), which ""hints at what Alpine cars will be like tomorrow," while tech features will include Alpine-specific battery chemistry, powerful motors, and torque vectoring.

 

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