Renault has bought out the remaining stake held by Caterham in its Alpine business.
The acquisition brings to an end to the partnership signed in November 2012 by Renault and Caterham to develop and manufacture sports cars through a joint venture, Société des Automobiles Alpine Caterham, owned equally by the two partners.
As a result, Société des Automobiles Alpine Caterham will change its name to Société des Automobiles Alpine, a change which will be made as part of a general meeting to be held later this month.
However, the French manufacturer has said that the arrangement was made by mutual consent, and that there’s still a likely chance of the two companies could still work together in the future.
Renault Alpine Sports Car
Renault say they will continue to plan to launch their own Alpine sports car in 2016, as initially planned, while the Caterham Group will go ahead with developing their own separate sports car.
Details of the new Renault still haven’t been fully confirmed, but the company has described the new car as the “Berlinette of the 21st century”, and says that 90 per cent of the design of the new car is complete, with an interior design set to be finished before the end of the summer.
According to reports, Renault confirmed earlier this year that the deal with Caterham would be cut, telling French union CGT that there would be no impact on the 300 jobs currently held at its Dieppe factory.
Alpine A110-50 concept car
In 2012 Renault unveiled their Alpine A110-50 concept car, with carbon fibre bodywork and a bold and futuristic look, a 2.6m wheelbase and a mid-rear mounted 3.5-litre V6 engine with a monstrous output of 395bhp.
It was originally listed as costing £40,000 upon its release in 2014, however has since been delayed due to design changes and setbacks and it’s unknown whether it’ll see release in its current form or in a new version with further revisions.
Caterham’s design for its own sports car is believed to have been ready for some months, but as both cars were due to be launched together it’s likely due to face similar setbacks to the Renault, though it’s understood that the British company will continue to use the tech they’ve already developed with Renault for its own car.
Caterham insiders have also refuted rumours that the firm has acquired beleaguered German sports car maker Artega to make use of its mid-engined platform and production facilities. Caterham’s finished car is expected to have around 300bhp available, while Renault’s revised Alpine is tipped to have around 250bhp and a kerb weight of some 1,100kg.