Renault and Dacia seek petrol and diesel car ban extension to 2040

Renault Group’s director of engineering believes hybridised combustion-engined cars could still have a place beyond 2030, offering affordable mobility for many motorists

Renault Megane E-Tech Electric SUV - charging

Groupe Renault’s executive vice president for engineering, Gilles Leborgne, will seek an extension on the European-wide ban on cars with some form of combustion engine until around 2040, in a bid to keep offering affordable vehicles as the industry pushes towards more expensive all-electric models.

He told Auto Express at the Munich Motor Show that, “We will fight in order to keep hybrid alive after 2034, 2035, because [in the current EU proposal] we have a full ban of internal combustion engines. It’s not said like that, but it’s zero-emission by 2034, so translated it means no ICE.

“We do think it’s not the right approach so we will fight to propose a smoother way of doing things, to have a proportion of hybrid until I would say 2040.”

The main reason for the extension request in Renault’s eyes will be financial, helping ensure consumers can still afford new vehicles. Of all the brands under the Groupe Renault umbrella, it’s the more value-focused Dacia that would be in line to continue with ICE production.

“It depends on the brand – Renault will be 90 per cent full electric by 2030, 100 per cent for Alpine, but for Dacia it will be in the range of 10 per cent BEV, but we will have a lot of hybrid, because our strategy is simple, we build Dacia only on the CMF-B platform.

“We can bring all of the technologies from Renault to Dacia no problem. We are doing that already; look at the Sandero. But of course, because of the cost of the car we will wait until it’s absolutely necessary to do it. For Dacia it will be a nice and gentle move. We will keep petrol and LPG, then we’ll move to mild hybrid (48 volt) and hybrid, then to full electric.”

Leborgne believes there are three main reasons for extending the ICE ban to 2040, covering both the business case and in the interests of buyers.

“Firstly, we want to link the rate of battery cars that will be mandatory [to sell] to the infrastructure. Number two, we no doubt have the technology, but we don’t know if we have the customers for it yet. Third, we need to adapt – we have a lot of people in our factories; we have to transform our people, and that will take time. We don’t want to have a big rejection of the direction; we are ready to move for the sake of the planet.”

Renault’s engineering and research and development exec did offer a word of balance though, highlighting that; “I want to be clear: I’m not against it [electrification]. I am not pushing back. We are saying that, because it’s a proposal from the European Commission, it has to go in front of parliament, and we have to take care of the people. We have to take care of our people, and the freedom for mobility. That’s the point.

“It means affordable cars, because people need to move and they need to have affordable cars – and to have affordable cars we are working like hell to reduce the cost of BEV, but nobody today can ignore the fact that you have extra cost with battery-electric vehicles.

“Renault Group, Renault brand and Dacia, we are popular. Because of that we need to make mobility affordable. That’s our role. We were the first to move, but we need to take care of everyone, to keep their right for mobility.”

Should Renault’s request for an extension of the 2030 ICE car ban to 2040 be granted? Have your say in the comments…

Recommended

New Volkswagen ID. Buzz electric van spied ahead of 2022 launch
VW ID.Buzz
Volkswagen I.D. Buzz

New Volkswagen ID. Buzz electric van spied ahead of 2022 launch

Volkswagen’s retro-inspired ID. Buzz electric van has been captured testing in pre-production form, ahead of its 2022 unveiling
14 Sep 2021
“There’s plenty of life left in motor shows yet – and we love ‘em”
Opinion - BMW i Vision Circular
Opinion

“There’s plenty of life left in motor shows yet – and we love ‘em”

Editor-in-chief Steve Fowler is pleased to see that the 2021 Munich Motor Show is proving to be such a success
8 Sep 2021
Munich Motor Show 2021: news round-up and all the cars
Munich Motor Show 2021 - header
News

Munich Motor Show 2021: news round-up and all the cars

Our detailed round-up of all the cars and news from the 2021 Munich IAA Mobility show
8 Sep 2021
New Volkswagen ID. Life wows at Munich Motor Show
Volkswagen ID Life - Munich front
Volkswagen

New Volkswagen ID. Life wows at Munich Motor Show

The new Volkswagen ID. Life concept previews a future affordable electric car that will sit below the ID.3 in the brand's line-up
7 Sep 2021

Most Popular

Exclusive: banned 71-reg number plates released
Number plates
News

Exclusive: banned 71-reg number plates released

Latest DVLA list of banned UK registrations reveals which 71-plates are too rude for the road
21 Sep 2021
'The death of cheap cars will be a travesty for personal mobility'
Opinion cheap cars
Opinion

'The death of cheap cars will be a travesty for personal mobility'

Our appetite for small, cheap cars is as strong as ever - although Mike Rutherford warns they may no longer be profitable
12 Sep 2021
New MG HS plug-in hybrid 2021 review
MG HS PHEV - front
MG HS SUV

New MG HS plug-in hybrid 2021 review

We find out where the new MG HS PHEV fits in the highly competitive plug-in hybrid SUV sector
21 Sep 2021