Re­nault’s rein­ven­tion

Two EVS to lead the change

Autocar - - THIS WEEK -

Re­nault is pre­par­ing for a wide-reach­ing over­haul and model blitz – and it’s pin­ning its re­vival hopes on two new elec­tric SUVS and a re­newed fo­cus on C-seg­ment mod­els.

The French brand’s new part­ner­ship ar­range­ment with Nis­san, an­nounced ear­lier this year, will lead to a more ex­ten­sive shar­ing of plat­form, tech­nol­ogy and pro­duc­tion re­sources to boost ef­fi­cien­cies.

It will also re­sult in Re­nault tak­ing the strate­gic lead in Europe un­der new boss Luca de Meo, who has be­gun over­haul­ing the brand’s prod­uct roadmap de­spite only start­ing his role in July. His aim will be to turn around a firm that recorded a £6.5 bil­lion loss in the first half of 2020.

The fruits of these shared re­sources have al­ready pro­duced the CMF-EV plat­form, which made its de­but on the newly un­veiled Nis­san Ariya elec­tric large SUV. That plat­form will also pro­vide the ba­sis for fur­ther Re­nault and Nis­san elec­tric SUVS in the com­ing years.

Re­nault will spawn two mod­els off the CMF-EV plat­form ini­tially, with the first be­ing a high-rid­ing pro­duc­tion adap­ta­tion of the Mor­phoz con­cept re­vealed in spring this year.

Although it’s tipped to be sim­i­lar in length and width to the cur­rent Re­nault Kad­jar, it will sit lower to the ground than that car, as the con­cept pre­vi­ously in­di­cated. This is be­cause of the greater need for aero­dy­namic ef­fi­ciency as Re­nault pushes for the max­i­mum pos­si­ble EV range to en­sure that the model can cover a higher per­cent­age of cus­tomers’ car us­age in Europe.

“We iden­ti­fied there was room be­low the Zoe but even more ex­pec­ta­tion above the Zoe,” said Re­nault’s elec­tric ve­hi­cles boss, Gilles Nor­mand. “Peo­ple are real­is­ing that EVS are safe and en­joy­able and can be taken on much longer trips than [early] EVS.”

Nor­mand cites a tar­get range of up to 342 miles for such a model. Whether that’s achiev­able re­mains to be seen. The Ariya’s long­est quoted range (for the 87kwh ◊

❝ The aim is to turn around a firm that lost £6.5 bil­lion in the first half of 2020 ❞

CMF-EV plat­form of the Nis­san Ariya will be used by Re­nault’s new EVS

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