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TRENDS

From the catwalk to the street, from horological complications to extravagant jewellery, from designers in the spotlight to the new modes of transport, our Trends pages illustrate the latest in lifestyle. These cleanly-designed, well-illustrated pages take a sideways look to decipher major shifts in society as they happen, offering a comprehensive, avant-gardist view of today's zeitgeist. COTE shows you the most complex details with text and pictures.

February 2022

Automotive revival.

  • Case study
  • Beyond the word, revival in the automotive industry is taking various forms depending on the manufacturer and, more specifically, their vision of the future. Our analysis and explanations!

Whilst the price of black gold soars at the pumps, car manufacturers are embarking on a race to innovate the likes of which the industry has never seen before. Dynamism proves that the sector has the resources to revive itself, with Seat, through Cupra, at the head of these “punchy” manufacturers. Cupra, formerly Seat high-performance motorsport division, is now a fully-fledged entity targeting premium positioning and going full steam ahead by unveiling Cupra Born, its first 100 % electric car, an emission-free car capable of delivering a variety of emotions through sound. “The design process was like a musical production, dynamically combining recorded natural sounds and sounds created electronically on a synthesiser, fascinating and unprecedented, says Adrian Mateo, the brand’s sound engineer.

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La Cupra Born roulera au gré de notes métalliques, histoire de l’identifier parmi les voitures électriques.
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Cette version sera bientôt collector pour avoir été une des dernières voitures Alpine à moteur thermique. © Sébastien Staub

MG, THE PHOENIX REBORN AS A DRAGON
In the collective unconscious, the green convertible that has had more than one ‘gentleman’fantasising about its allure and design inevitably springs to mind when we think of MG. Of late, MG has definitively turned a page in its history, beginning a new chapter in May 2020 with the brand’s re-establishment on French soil. A “restart” for which the brand’s current owner – Chinese group Saic Motor, the world’s seventh-largest manufacturer – has high hopes. To that end, the brand is pursuing its strategy of offering electrified vehicles, either 100% electric or plug-in hybrids (rechargeable with 50km of autonomy). And at an affordable price that allows customers to access electro-mobility. Another strategic objective is to expand its network of 120 national sales outlets to 180 distributor and repair outlets by the end of 2022. Finally, two new models will be presented by the end of the year, in addition to the three cars already sold in France. But the most important thing lies elsewhere. The brand is currently working on the first 100% electric convertible. A reminder that its roots forever remain in the convertible world!

ALPINE, THE SPORTS CAR, ITS UNIVERSE
Certain brands may be going electric, but others are looking to their past to build their present better. As is the case with Alpine investing more than ever in the sports car since its return to the road in 2018. Renault, incidentally, is no longer Renault in F1—now called Alpine. The French Gendarmerie is a further example, renewing its relationship with the brand and equipping itself with 26 Alpine A110 Pure sports cars. A way to chase down crazy drivers on the motorway… But the A110 model remains the be-all and end-all of Made in France sports cars, especially for sports car enthusiasts. The brand’s unveiling of its latest street hawk, the A110 S, drives the point home. A real gem at the top end of the range, emphasising performance with a sport chassis that enhances the 300 BHP engine’s capability. To make this latest-version Alpine even sportier, it comes fitted with a rear spoiler for the first time in its history.

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Le prototype qui servira d’ébauche au premier cabriolet électrique de la marque.