Renault may be making cuts on its path back to profitability but it’s also making one notable addition: a new brand.
It’ll be helmed by Clotilde Delbos, who is also Groupe Renault’s chief financial officer and deputy CEO.
Each vehicle in the Mobilize range will be all-electric and will fulfil different needs, including car-sharing and ride-hailing services and last mile delivery.
As a new mobility brand, Mobilize will offer hardware in the form of vehicles, and the software used to interact with them.
It’ll be supported by RCI Bank and Services, who’ll help provide leasing, subscription and pay-as-you-go options to users.
Leveraging Renault’s dealership network, Mobilize vehicles will be easily accessible in Europe whether that be for a quick drive up the road or with a multi-year subscription.
Mobilize’s goals are to reduce the gap between car usage and cost, as it says cars are currently left unused 90 per cent of the time, and both contribute to a zero CO2 footprint and improve residual value.
Mobilize is also developing a universal charging pass and app for customers in Europe.
The brand revealed its EZ-1 prototype, which it refers to as its Ace.
The EZ-1 is designed for shared use, with users only paying what they use based on either time behind the wheel or mileage. Users will unlock and start it with their smartphone.
The two-seater measures just 2.3m long, or approximately 1.3m shorter than a Kia Picanto.
It’s made of 50 per cent recycled materials and has been developed to be 95 per cent recyclable at the end of its life.
The new brand also showed the rest of its hand, revealing the cars it’s referring to as the King, Queen and Jack Of All Trades.
The King is based on the new Dacia Spring Electric and is pitched as having the best cost of ownership for a four-seater.
The small Queen sedan has been developed entirely for ride-hailing and promises best-in-class roominess. It measures 4.6m long and 1.8m wide, or roughly the size of a Hyundai i30 Sedan.
Finally, the Jack Of All Trades is a load-carrier designed for last-mile delivery with a modular cargo bay designed for easy loading and unloading.
Once a Mobilize vehicle has been played out, it’ll be recycled at the Renault Re-Factory. Old batteries will be recycled as stationary energy sources.
Groupe Renault is being realistic, acknowledging the new brand won’t be instantly profitable, with CEO Luca de Meo saying “we are not betting on money in the next year”.
“You know me. I’m the CFO. It’s no surprise that if Luca put me on that job because he knows I’m not going to spend billions and be losing money,” said Mobilize CEO Clotilde Delbos.
“If we stick to the usual model, waiting for people to be 55 years old and get finance from the bank, we know that in 10 years that’s not what it’s going to be.
“Today, more and more people don’t want to buy a car. They want to lease a car and in many cases they want to just pay for the ride. They want to go to a subscription, they want flexibility.”