In a big hopeful move to catch up to Tesla and Chinese manufacturers, French automaker Renault has officially separated its newly formed EV unit Ampere from the rest of the business. The company has announced its executive team, launched a new logo, and set up some highly ambitious goals as it readies its IPO – although tough market conditions won’t make this an easy affair.
In a press release, Ampere announced that it employs more than 11,000 people, with a third of those engineers. The motivation behind the split is to, of course, rebrand Renault’s EV division as a pure player and attract Telsa-like valuations while phasing out ICE sales in the coming years. Renault plans to go all-electric by 2030 – and with the French government holding a 15% stake in the company, keeping its high-profile EV business in the country is essential, with the tandem goal of relocating the combustion division outside of France.
Ampere says it aims to slash 40% of costs in manufacturing cars through 2027 and beyond by offering fewer models and reducing costs at the conception and production stage. The company, with its three factories in northern France, targets a production capacity of 400,000 EVs to start, ramping up to 600,000 in 2026 and ultimately 1 million in 2031, according to Reuters. Ampere will buy its batteries from Chinese-Japanese AESC Envision and French startup Verkor.
Ampere currently only offers the Megane E-Tech but plans to add five more models by 2030. Renault is moving fast to offer up budget models Renault 5 and 4 coming up soon, in addition to the Scénic Vision.
Renault and its longtime ally Nissan were makers of first-generation EVs in 2010 with the Nissan Leaf and early predecessors of the much-beloved Zoe – and let’s not forget everyone’s favorite French car, the Twizy. Its budget all-electric Dacia Spring, one of Europe’s cheapest EVs, is also one of the top-selling EVs on the continent. However, Ampere won’t be taking these models with them but rather focus on becoming “the first EV and software pure player born from an OEM disruption.”
The company has set November 15 as the date of its investor day; Ampere CEO Luca de Meo, the former head of the Renault Group, has valued the new EV business unit at up to €10 billion ($10.47 billion). At the end of last month, Mitsubishi announced that it will invest up to $200 million in Ampere.
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