Renault will unveil a high-end SUV, the Rafale… at the Paris Air Show

On June 18, the French manufacturer Renault will unveil its new model, a high-end D-segment large coupe SUV. On your calendars! Appointment is made… at Le Bourget, in the north of Paris, on the occasion of the 54th International Aeronautics and Space Show. Yes, you read correctly. Is this choice of location the result of a gross error on the part of a communication team a little to the west? Nay. And for good reason: Renault chose the name of a fighter plane well known to the French and military aviation enthusiasts to designate its new flagship model: the “Rafale”, produced since the end of the 1980s by Dassault Aviation.

The choice made by Renault to present its latest creation at Le Bourget is however much more than a simple nod to the French aircraft manufacturer. Rather, it’s about bringing back to the audience fond memories of the past “glorious” of Renault in aviation. “Few people know it, but the name Rafale belongs to Renault”, recalls Sylvia Dos-Santos, head of appellation strategy in the marketing department of the diamond brand, quoted in a press release.

“The Rafale name belongs to Renault”

Owned by the automotive group since 1936, when Renault was also an aeronautical engine manufacturer, the name Rafale was carried by the aircraft aboard which the champion Hélène Boucher broke the women’s world speed record over 1,000 kilometers in 1934 by reaching 445 kilometers per hour. The famous aviator had died the same year, at the age of 26, aboard a Caudron C430 Rafale which had crashed in a wood in Yvelines, not far from the training tracks of the Caudron Renault aerodrome, in Guyancourt. , where the manufacturer’s Technocentre has been installed.

The new SUV made in Spain?

With its new “Rafale”, the diamond group is preparing to present one of the flagship models of the vast renewal of its offer, intended to increase its margins. The manufacturer is currently engaged in a drastic strategic overhaul with the separation of its electric activities and its internal combustion engines. This hybrid-powered vehicle is one of the 18 launches planned by the Renault group by the end of 2025. According to a source close to the group, the car will be assembled in Palencia (Spain), alongside the Austral and the ‘Space. Contacted by Reuters, Renault declined to comment on where it was made.

with Reuters (Gilles Guillaume report, edited by Blandine Hénault)

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