The French automaker has been very successful in delivering a compelling entry level budget brand – Dacia and its strategy has been mirrored at Nissan with the revival of Datsun. Now it’s time for more exotic appearances – such as the Alpine sports brand.
After the carmaker has attracted the buyers on a budget all around the world it’s time for those with a privileged financial situation – it has introduced the Initiale Paris upscale trim on certain models in the lineup and is now moving to reintroduce the Alpine sports car brand after a two decades absence. And the wealthy enthusiasts might get their first taste of a new Alpine as early as next year. The brand recently featured a new prototype that carefully takes us back to the Alpine A110 sold in the 1960s and 1970s, which should be driven in September in Dieppe on the Normandy coast as the French automaker marks the origin model’s introduction some six decades ago. “This is an initial project we’re still working on, ” commented Bernard Ollivier, chief executive officer of Renault Alpine, talking about the Alpine Celebration concept.
Renault mulls the introduction of the first new Alpine model at the end of next year or in the first months of 2017 – with prices going up from 50,000 euros ($56,000), with an initial test run of just 3,000 units per year. The automaker is pushing for profitability now by moving upscale its Renault brand, reshaping the model lineup core design and pushing the Initiale Paris towards a luxury destiny of its own. “This won’t be a retro car,” added Ollivier. “It will have both the modernity of current sports cars and the heritage of the Alpine.” The sports car revival is an integral part of the rehaulign strategy, aimed at better positioning Renault on its main markets.