Renault Group has announced major partnerships with Envision AESC and Verkor, both designed to accelerate the French automaker’s EV capabilities.

Envision AESC is the Japanese consortium backed by Renault’s alliance partner Nissan, which since 2007 has become a global player in world-leading battery technology and smart, digitalised, low-carbon battery plants. Verkor is a French EV battery cells start-up.

Renault says this strategy will help it “become a more competitive and efficient EV player, accelerate its industrial transformation, and reach its ecological transition targets”.

The agreements are geared around developing a French battery gigafactory with Envision. Manufacturing capacity should be 9 GWh in 2024 increasing to 24 GWh by 2030. Under the deal Envision will invest up to €2 billion to produce latest technology, cost-competitive, low-carbon and safe batteries for electric models, including the future R5. Envision AESC forecasts 2,500 new jobs by 2030.

And with Verkor, Renault has signed a Memorandum of Understanding and will take a 20% stake in the company. The aim of this investment is to develop a high-performance battery suitable for the C and higher segments of the Renault range, as well as for the Alpine models.

Renault Group is aiming to achieving carbon neutrality in Europe by 2040 and worldwide by 2050, with EV sales making up 90% of all Renault brand sales by 2030.

Luca de Meo, CEO of Renault Group, says, “The latest strategic partnerships with Envision AESC and Verkor greatly bolster our position as we ensure the Europe-based production of one million electric vehicles by 2030. This marks a major milestone as we strengthen our competitive edge, by rooting our Group in the underlying momentum of French industry and striving to reach our carbon neutrality objectives. The Group thus reaffirms its willingness to produce popular, affordable, and cost-effective electric cars in France.”

Lei Zhang, founder and Chief Executive Officer of Envision Group, adds, “Envision Group’s mission is to be the net zero technology partner of choice for global enterprises, governments, and cities. We are therefore delighted that Renault Group chose Envision AESC batteries for its next generation of EVs. Investing to build a new gigafactory in northern France, we aim to support the net zero carbon transition by making high performance, longer range batteries and EVs affordable and accessible for millions more motorists. This first phase development will unlock future large-scale investment to grow the local supply chain and develop the whole life cycle opportunities of batteries, including energy storage, battery reuse, smart charging and closed loop recycling. It has the potential to create thousands of new high value green jobs as part of an end-to-end battery ecosystem in the region.”

Benoit Lemaignan, CEO of Verkor, states, “We look forward to delivering on our common vision of making e-mobility widely available. This is a major deal which demonstrates our progress along our roadmap to generate up to 50 GWh of battery cell production capacity by 2030 – a cornerstone in developing a competitive, sovereign and sustainable battery supply chain in Europe.”