Renault is talking to VW about co-developing a cheap, small EV

Vlad, 29 February 2024

Renault and Volkswagen are currently engaged in "good discussions" about developing a small and cheap EV together, which could stave off the Chinese invasion of cars that are cheaper than their European counterparts. Along with waning demand for EVs, this is the biggest problem that European companies like Renault and Volkswagen might be facing more of in the future, especially in European markets - where a lot of their sales come from.

So Renault CEO Luca de Meo has confirmed this week at the Geneva auto show that he's in talks with VW, but also other potential partners that unfortunately he chose not to name. "I am open to anybody who wants to jump in. I have production capacity. I have the platform. I know how to do it", he said.

Renault is talking to VW about co-developing a cheap, small EV

Renault's own entrant in the space we're talking about here will be the new Twingo EV, landing no earlier than 2026 for a targeted price of under $21,000. Renault's partnership talks involve exactly the Twingo's platform, a shortened version of the AmpR Small architecture that is used in the newly introduced Renault 5 E-Tech electric.

Renault's CEO has previously said that the Twingo could use LFP (lithium iron phosphate) batteries in order to cut its costs. Renault plans on making the Twingo regardless of whether the partnership talks are successful or not. "I don't have any time to waste, so I will not postpone it", de Meo said.

Renault is talking to VW about co-developing a cheap, small EV

VW brand CEO Thomas Schaefer has in the past said he is open to partnerships to help reduce EV prices below $21,000, so in theory we could soon see a deal between VW and Renault on this matter, but these are still "early talks" so anything can happen.

European car makers do have a history of collaborating on minicars - think Toyota Aygo / Peugeot 108 / Citroen C1, or Ford making the second-gen Ka on the Fiat 500's platform. Speaking of which, Luca de Meo himself is credited with reviving the Fiat 500 while leading the Italian company, so he clearly knows a thing or two about making popular small cars. Now all he needs to do is bring that expertise to the EV space, which is exactly what he seems to be trying here.


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Reader comments

  • Emira

What can VW contribute other than software issues?

I loved twingo till the first time.good to see they keep the original would be a great replacement for zoe.

The design of the new Twingo EV is quite impressive. It ought to have hit the market by now, perhaps alongside this year's Renault 5 EV.



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