Renault committed to F1 "for eternity" through Alpine

Renault remains committed to Formula 1 "for eternity" by making the series the "backbone" of its Alpine brand, according to group CEO Luca de Meo.

Renault committed to F1 "for eternity" through Alpine

Renault opted to rebrand its works F1 team as Alpine ahead of the 2021 season as part of a wider overhaul of the group’s brands and car companies.

The Alpine name will make its official F1 debut this weekend at the Bahrain Grand Prix, led by drivers Fernando Alonso and Esteban Ocon.

The rebrand marked the latest big change for the Enstone-based squad, which has served on-and-off as Renault’s works F1 team over the years. It is now the only team to race with Renault power units after the manufacturer’s final customer, McLaren, switched to Mercedes engines after last season.

But de Meo - who took over as Renault CEO last July and has overseen the group’s ‘Renaulution’ - made abundantly clear that F1 remained a core part of its image moving forward despite the push to cut costs.

PLUS: Why Renault's new 'car guy' CEO couldn't pull plug on F1

“For the commitment of Renault, it’s true that we went back and forth, but we have been always there, for 44 years, as an engine producer, or engine and chassis, with our brand,” de Meo told select media including Autosport.

“I’m a car guy, so when I came to lead Renault, I said to myself, ‘I’m not going to be the one that is going to stop 44 years of history of Renault. I’m not going to be that guy’.

Lucas de Meo, CEO of Renault

Lucas de Meo, CEO of Renault

Photo by: Charles Coates / Motorsport Images

“So as long as I’m here, the people for Formula 1, they don’t have to worry. They only have to work to create a profitable business model, to win the races etc, and to have a good image for the company.

“But it is very clear, one of the messages from my side is that we are there, let’s say, for eternity, with Alpine in Formula 1. Because Formula 1 is the backbone of Alpine. It’s in the middle of the company.”

Alpine has outlined a plan to become a fully-electric performance road car brand in the future, with de Meo saying he sees the company as a mix of a “mini Ferrari” and a “mini Tesla”.

PLUS: Why there's more to Alpine's latest F1 rebrand than marketing speak

De Meo explained how he wanted F1 to be as significant to the Alpine brand as it is to Ferrari, despite the push for electrification on the automotive side.

“At Ferrari, you take the Gestione Sportiva out, and Ferrari is a different thing - it’s the same [for Alpine],” de Meo said.

“It’s a mini Ferrari, and with all the humility, I have to say, but it’s a mix of a mini Ferrari and a mini Tesla, because we’re going to propose electric cars to the consumer.

“We’re going to try to create a completely new customer experience, with the network, with the services etc. It’s a good opportunity to experiment.”

shares
comments

Related video

Russell replaces Grosjean as GPDA director

Previous article

Russell replaces Grosjean as GPDA director

Next article

Williams signs ex-VW WRC man Demaison as F1 technical director

Williams signs ex-VW WRC man Demaison as F1 technical director
Load comments
Why polarising Mosley’s legacy amounts to far more than tabloid rumour Plus

Why polarising Mosley’s legacy amounts to far more than tabloid rumour

The newspapers, naturally, lingered over Max Mosley’s tainted family history and niche sexual practices. But this is to trivialise the legacy of a big beast of motor racing politics. STUART CODLING weighs the life of a man whose work for safety on both road and track has saved hundreds of thousands of lives, but whose penchant for cruelty remains problematic and polarising

Why pragmatic Perez isn't fazed by no-nonsense Red Bull F1 culture Plus

Why pragmatic Perez isn't fazed by no-nonsense Red Bull F1 culture

Sergio Perez has spent most of his career labouring in Formula 1’s midfield, wondering whether he’d ever get another shot at the big time. Red Bull has handed him that chance and, although life at the top is tough, the Baku winner is doing all the right things to get on terms with Max Verstappen, says BEN ANDERSON

Formula 1
Jun 11, 2021
What the data tells us about the F1 2021 title fight Plus

What the data tells us about the F1 2021 title fight

Formula 1 has been tracking car performance using timing loops mounted every 200m around each circuit – to the extent that it was able to anticipate Ferrari’s 'surprise’ pole in Monaco. PAT SYMONDS explains what this means for this season and beyond

Formula 1
Jun 10, 2021
The weighty issue F1 needs to find a balance with Plus

The weighty issue F1 needs to find a balance with

OPINION: After consecutive street races with contrasting highlights, one theme stood out which has become a prevalent issue with modern Formula 1 cars. But is there a way to solve it or, at least, reach a happy middle ground to help all parties?

Formula 1
Jun 10, 2021
The changes behind a ‘feel-good’ F1 result in Baku Plus

The changes behind a ‘feel-good’ F1 result in Baku

OPINION: The Azerbaijan Grand Prix had elements that make Formula 1 really exciting – unpredictability and shock results. This resulted in heartbreak for several of the championship’s regular contenders and joy for others who rarely reach the ultimate limelight. And one of those on the Baku podium is riding a wave of form he’s keen to continue

Formula 1
Jun 9, 2021
The human cost to replacing Formula 1's cancelled rounds Plus

The human cost to replacing Formula 1's cancelled rounds

OPINION: With the global pandemic still lingering, Singapore's grand prix has been cancelled for 2021, with more looking likely to follow. Although Formula 1 has TV deals and profits to chase, retaining a 23-race calendar could be most harmful to those who sacrifice the most for the championship

Formula 1
Jun 8, 2021
Azerbaijan Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Azerbaijan Grand Prix Driver Ratings

An eventful weekend in Baku full of incident and drama lent the race result an unusual feel, as three drivers scored their first podiums of the year. But it wasn't the eventual race winner who scored top marks in our driver ratings

Formula 1
Jun 7, 2021
How three drivers 'won' the Azerbaijan GP Plus

How three drivers 'won' the Azerbaijan GP

Formula 1's return to Baku after a year away had thrown up an eventful qualifying marred by four red flags, but the race appeared to be running to a familiar Red Bull vs Mercedes template entering the closing stages. That is, until a dramatic conclusion where victory was snatched away from two drivers, before landing in the lap of Sergio Perez

Formula 1
Jun 7, 2021