Renault has presented the third phase of its strategic plan “Renaulution”. In it, the car company not only specifies the electric roadmap for its brands, but also its plans for the future independent electric car division.
After the first two “Renaulution” phases “Resurrection” and “Renovation”, the “Revolution” is now on the agenda – the French company wants to push ahead and spin off the electric car business. The EV offshoot, called Ampere, will develop, manufacture and sell fully electric passenger cars for the Renault brand using software-defined vehicle (SDV) technology, according to the announcement. Ampere will be “a fully-fledged OEM with around 10,000 employees”, according to Renault CEO Luca de Meo’s plans. Half of its 3,500 or so engineers will specialise in software. To accelerate the development of those “software defined vehicles”, the French company agreed on close partnerships with Google and Qualcomm.
By 2030, Ampere will offer six electric models: The Renault 5 Electric and Renault 4 Electric, the Megane E-Tech Electric, the Scénic Electric and two other models yet to be revealed. It remains to be seen in which segments and on which platforms the two unknown models will emerge. In May, Renault presented the Scénic Vision concept as a preview of an electric family vehicle – with the 40 kWh battery for everyday use familiar from the Megane and a fuel cell for long distances. It remains to be seen whether this concept will make it into series production or whether the Scénic will become a pure BEV.
Ampere is expected to produce around one million electric vehicles for the Renault brand in 2031. Renault is relying on its ElectriCity production network in northern France and its battery partners to provide a total of 80 GWh by 2030.
To finance its plans, Renault plans an initial public offering of Ampere on Euronext Paris in the second half of 2023 at the earliest, subject to market conditions. Renault intends to remain the majority shareholder in Ampere, but is still looking for other investors. Alliance partners Nissan and Mitsubishi Motors are considering investing in Ampere.
In addition to the plans around Ampere, which is to focus on Renault-branded electric cars as a new entity, the strategy update also fleshed out the goals for Renault Group’s other brands. Renault’s Alpine sports car brand is to offer only electric cars from 2026 – so far there is only a single unit based on the A110. In light commercial vehicles, Renault plans to launch a family of battery-electric vans based on its own platform from 2026, under the name FlexEVan, alongside the activities of its fuel cell joint venture Hyvia, jointly operated with Plug Power.
Renault will merge its internal combustion and hybrid car business (including Dacia and the other light commercial vehicles) with Geely’s in Project Horse. The focus will be on markets outside Europe, notably Latin America, India, South Korea and North Africa.
“Today’s announcements are a new sign of Renault Group team’s determination to prepare the company for the future challenges and opportunities generated by the transformation of our industry,” said Thierry Piéton, chief financial officer of Renault Group. The Board of Directors had approved the Board’s plans the previous day.
With reporting by Sebastian Schaal, Germany.