In the face of Chinese and US dominance in the electric car market, Renault’s CEO, Luca de Meo, the importance of European manufacturers not conceding defeat.

At the Geneva Motor Show, he acknowledged the need for Renault to close the gap with its overseas competitors, while also demonstrating the viability and appeal of small electric cars.

Renault’s latest offering, the Renault 5, blends futuristic electric technology with nostalgic retro styling, paying homage to the iconic Renault 5 of the past. Despite the challenges of manufacturing electric cars, de Meo believes in providing affordable options for consumers to embrace this new technology.

However, affordability remains a challenge due to the higher production costs of electric vehicles compared to conventional ones. While the Renault 5 is priced between £25,000-30,000, profitability remains uncertain. De Meo highlighted the potential for reducing battery size and cost as a means to improve affordability, stressing the importance of innovation and taking on challenges in the electric vehicle market.

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Renault, once a pioneer in electric motoring with models like the Zoe, now faces stiff competition from Tesla and Chinese brands like BYD. De Meo acknowledged China’s advantages in battery technology and production capacity but emphasized the need for cooperation between European and Chinese firms to bridge the gap.

Despite the challenges, de Meo expressed confidence in Europe’s ability to catch up in the electric car race. He emphasised the importance of not surrendering and the need for collaboration alongside competition to drive innovation and progress in the automotive industry.