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Renault-Nissan Alliance strengthens ties

Common theme: Nissan's new X-Trail is one of the first vehicles built using the Renault-Nissan Common Module Family platform.

More shared platforms and further integration as Renault-Nissan Alliance cuts costs

4 Feb 2014

THE Renault-Nissan Alliance has announced it will produce two new shared vehicle platforms as it works to reduce costs by 4.3 billion euros ($A6.6 billion) by the year 2016.

Renault-Nissan chairman and chief executive Carlos Ghosn confirmed to US online motoring publication Automotive News that the two platforms would underpin a number of models and produce more than three million vehicles by 2016.

“We are going to be really leveraging better than most of our competitors in size and scale,” Mr Ghosn said. “If you have the right strategy and product, size matters. Size will really protect you from your competition.”

The first of these platforms is the Common Module Family (CMF) that will spawn both C- and D-segment (small and mid-size) sedans and SUVs from both brands, including Nissan's third-generation X-Trail and the new Qashqai crossover, as well as the next Renault Espace people-mover and Scenic.

The report suggests that about 75 per cent of Renault-Nissan's total vehicle production will come off four platforms by 2020.

Another model that could potentially be built using the CMF platform is Mitsubishi's next North American focused D-segment offering. The Japanese car-maker confirmed late last year that it would produce its replacement for the US-market Galant mid-sizer and the Lancer small car in collaboration with Renault-Nissan.

Further cost-saving measures for the alliance include integrating a number of key internal departments within both companies, including research and development, human resources, manufacturing, and logistics and purchasing.

Renault and Nissan will both present the integration plans to unions in France and Japan, with plans to implement them within about a month.

Mr Ghosn said the new arrangement would further strengthen the strong working relationship the two companies had enjoyed in the past, and it will help to produce faster results than before.

“Renault and Nissan’s partnership is fundamentally based on mutual respect and an attitude where all ‘win-win’ projects move forward on the fast track,” he said.

“With the new convergence projects, we will continue on the same path and with the same principles of respect and transparency - at an accelerated pace.”

The Renault-Nissan Alliance was formed in 1999, with Renault buying 36.8 per cent of the then financially crippled Nissan's stock. The Japanese car-maker bought 15 per cent of Renault's stock back in 2001 as it started to recover financially.

A release from the alliance said it was now the fourth-largest automotive group globally by volume.

The alliance covers a number of joint ventures and partnerships with other car-makers including Mitsubishi, Daimler, Russian car-maker Avtovaz, Indian brand Ashok Leyland and Chinese giant Dongfeng.

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