Production of Alpine GT X-Over electric SUV confirmed for Dieppe
Alpine's next generation is shaping up, with a confirmed production location for its new high performance EV SUV
Alpine has revealed new details about its incoming electric revolution, establishing a new three-model line up which will transform it from a niche sports car manufacturer into a high performance electric brand. Key to this will be Alpine's first SUV, based from the same platform as Renault's new Megane e-tech, which has now been confirmed for production at Alpine's traditional home in Dieppe, with plans to upgrade the factory to support the assembly of its new high-volume hopeful from 2025.
The wider line up, as previewed in a Renault Group conference, will also include a high performance variant of Renault's retro-styled 5 hatchback, a new all-electric version of the A110 sports car paired with Lotus's new electric sports car it recently announced, and this new crossover that we now know will be called the GT X-Over.
This plan was initially revealed by new Alpine/Renault boss Luca de Meo last year, and will be templated on his previous work with Cupra and Abarth, two sub-brand expansions that he was responsible for during his time at the helms of SEAT and Fiat respectively. Without hesitation de Meo has confirmed that he plans to use the same technique with Alpine, transforming it into a more profitable part of the Renault-Nissan alliance, while lifting Renault’s image in one fell swoop.
‘As I did with Cupra, I will find a point of contact between the Alpine brand and some Renault models,’ de Meo told evo’s sister title Auto Express. ‘We need to be credible on that, so I’m not going to do that with Kangoo or Espace – I’m going to do that with things that fit the positioning of the brand.’
De Meo will set up the Alpine brand as a new business unit headed by current Renault F1 team managing director Cyril Abiteboul. It will be built on three pillars, comprising the rebranded Alpine F1 team, Renault Sport’s engineering business in Dieppe and the Alpine brand itself.
The incoming Alpine-branded models will utilise electrification in a similar fashion to Peugeot’s ‘Peugeot Sport Engineering’ products to create high performance derivatives of Renault models like the new Clio and Captur SUV. We also suspect a new high-performance Alpine crossover will be on the cards as part of the relaunch, sharing key platforms and tech with existing and upcoming Renault products.
Unfortunately, a combustion-engined A110 is unlikely to make it to a second generation, but derivative versions of the current car are due to be released periodically. A new bespoke Alpine product will also be difficult to justify, and a European-certified version of the recently revealed Nissan Z Proto is also likely to be off the cards as its underlying 370Z-derived chassis predates the A110’s lightweight aluminium structure.
This is all part of a wide-reaching €3billion cost-saving plan over the next four years for Renault. Production will be reduced from 4million to 3.4million units across the portfolio by 2024, with 4600 posts in France to be retrained, restructured or made redundant over the next three years, and another 10,000 job losses likely internationally.
This plan is also heavily reliant on the reaffirmation of its alliance with Nissan and Mitsubishi, streamlining development and part sharing across the group, reducing component diversity and increasing buying power with key suppliers.
From a product perspective, Renault will renew its focus on its electric vehicle and light commercial vehicle portfolios, two strong markets for the brand. This leaves Renault Sport at risk of falling silent, with the new Clio very unlikely to gain an RS version and a next generation Megane unlikely to be replaced at all.