The Renault Group and Mitsubishi Motor Corporation has today outlined a joint ‘roadmap’ towards electrification, one that will see the conglomerate invest 23 billion euro over the next five years into new EV platforms and the launch of 35 new EVs by 2030.
Ahead of the grand plan to be carbon neutral by 2050, the roadmap will see 23 billion euros – around $32.5 billion – used to expand its common platform range to five, on which 90 per cent of the three brands’ 35 new electric vehicles will be built.
The most significant of these platforms are the CMF-EV and the CMF-BEV. The former, on to which the new Nissan Ariya EV crossover and the Renault Megane E-Tech Electric have already been built, will be showcased upon each models’ launch in Japan over the coming weeks (the Ariya also headlined Nissan’s stand at the Montreal International Auto Show this week).
Dubbed the “benchmark platform for a new generation of electric vehicles for the Alliance partners”, the CMF-EV is compatible with a “high-performance motor and an ultra-thin battery” and will be the base of more than 15 new models by 2030. The Alliance projects up to 1.5 million vehicles will be built on this platform per year, given that the CMF-EV can be configured for sedans, SUVs and even sports cars between 4 m and 4.7 m in length, and batteries ranging from 40 kWh to 87 kWh.
The CMF-BEV meanwhile will be launched in 2024 and forms the base for 250,000 vehicles per year for the Alliance’s compact line-up. An estimated range of “up to 400 km” is predicted, as is a 10 per cent drop in power consumption and a 30 per cent reduction in cost over the platform of the electric Renault ZOE, which this year celebrates its 10th anniversary.
Tellingly, the Renault R5, an electric descendent of the vaunted Renault 5 unveiled last January and the new compact EV set to replace the Nissan Micra will both be built atop the CMF-BEV platform. Both will be engineered and built at the Renault Group’s ‘Electricity’ network of plants in northern France.
The existing three platforms – the CMF-AEV, the KEI-EV and the LCV-EV – will remain dedicated to entry level models, compact EVs, and light commercial vehicles respectively across all three brands.
On top of its new EV platforms, the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi alliance has also outlined its common battery strategy, and aims to increase production capacity to 220 GWh by 2030. The steps involved include reducing battery costs by 50 per cent by 2026 and by 65 per cent by 2026 ahead of mass-production of its own all-solid state battery technology (ASSB) by mid-2028. The latter would ensure a common battery supplier for Renault and Nissan across their core markets in Europe, Japan, the United States and China, into which 10 billion euros – around $14 billion CAD – has already been invested for electrification development.
The “common partners” outlined in the battery strategy include China’s Envision Group, with whom Renault finalized a deal to construct a battery plant in northern France last year and through which the partnership aims for a capacity of 30 gigawatt-hours per year by 2029.
Finally, the Alliance is also set to launch its first so-called ‘software defined’ vehicle in 2025 as a means to increase the lifespan of all three brands’ vehicles via ‘over the air’ software upgrades. The ‘Alliance Cloud’ will play a significant role in Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi’s shared work on autonomous driving systems, with more than 10 million vehicles across 45 different Alliance models set to feature advanced driver assistance technologies by 2026.
This exhaustive roadmap builds on the ‘Leader-Follower’ initiative outlined by the Alliance in May 2020, which essentially allows one leading team to develop select technology with the assistance of its two ‘followers’, a mutual development that aims to strengthen the three-way partnership.