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Debt crisis sports car? Renault, Caterham plan to revive Alpine at a more reasonable price

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Renault CEO Carlos Ghosn, left, shake hands with Caterham CEO Tony Fernandez following their joint news conference at Renault headquarters in Paris, Monday Nov. 5, 2012. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Jacques Brinon

PARIS - A sports car for the recession?

Renault and the Caterham Group announced Monday plans to revive the French automaker's Alpine sports car — and to sell it at a reasonable price. Caterham CEO Tony Fernandez promised he would do for sports cars what he has done for air travel with his low cost airline AirAsia.

Renault CEO Carlos Ghosn said they would modernize the Alpine while retaining the "DNA" of the venerated brand that captured rally titles in the 1970s but has since been discontinued.

Neither man gave details on the cars' design or price, saying they didn't want to constrain engineers. The car will be manufactured in northern France — a boon for the country's struggling industry. It won't hit markets for three or four years.

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