Heavyweight news, delivered by two of the car world’s lightweight stars. Alpine and Lotus have today confirmed plans to play together in the sandbox of electricity.
Specifically, to develop a fully electric sports car. Yep, we’re gonna need a bigger – possibly more lightweight – sandbox.
The “memorandum of understanding” signed by both companies will utilise not only long words like ‘comprehensive feasibility’ studies, but also the expertise and – crucially – the facilities of both Alpine and Lotus in bringing to life an EV sports car.
Furthermore, both will explore developing a ‘joint services offer’ that combines both companies’ extensive engineering nous, along with leveraging Alpine’s motorsport platform from Formula One to Formula E and even endurance racing.
Alpine boss Laurent Rossi said: “Both brands have an amazing legacy and we are most excited to start this work together, from engineering tailored solutions to developing a next-generation EV sports car.
“We’re putting F1 at the heart of our business, leveraging our in-house expertise and best-in-class partners such as Lotus to inject our cars with leading-edge performance, technology and motorisation,” he added.
Meanwhile, his counterpart over at Lotus – boss Phil Popham – had this to say: “We are proud to have been selected by Groupe Renault in this collaboration.
“Our companies have much in common, from a pioneering pedigree in lightweighting, to championship-winning sports cars which perform as impressively on the road as they do in the motorsports arena.”
While we await further details, a few things to ponder: just how lightweight will an EV sports car be from two companies famous for their lightweighting? Are they about to electrify and motorise a feather?
And is this a straight replacement for the current A110? Where does this fit in with the new petrol-powered Elise, supposedly due to be revealed later this year? More as we have it…