Renault to stop selling cars in China: Sells stake in Dongfeng joint venture

Renault has been one of many leading global automotive companies that has been hit hard by the impact of the coronavirus, which has led to factory closures and a slump in demand.

By:April 14, 2020 3:53 PM

Groupe Renault has announced today that it is selling out its stake in its Chinese joint venture with Dongfeng Motor Corporation. This means that Renault will no longer retail passenger cars in China, however, has clarified that it will be focussing on electric vehicles (EV) and light commercial vehicles (LCV). Regarding ICE passenger car, Groupe Renault has entered into a preliminary agreement with Dongfeng Motor Corporation under which Renault transfers its shares to Dongfeng. DRAC will stop its Renault brand-related activities.

In a press statement, Renault has stated that it will continue to provide aftersales service for its 3 lakh customers through Renault dealers but also through Alliance synergies. Further development for Renault brand passenger cars will be detailed later within the future new mid-term-plan.

Furthermore, Renault and Dongfeng will continue to cooperate with Nissan on new-generation engines like components supply to DRAC and diesel license to Dongfeng Automobile Co., Ltd. Renault and Dongfeng will also engage in the field of connected vehicles.

“We are opening a new chapter in China. We will concentrate on electric vehicles and light commercial vehicles, the two main drivers for future clean mobility and more efficiently leverage our relationship with Nissan,” Francois Provost, Chairman of the China region for Renault, said.

With 860,000 electric vehicles sold in China in 2019, China is by far the largest EV market in the world. EV sales are expected to reach 25% of the Chinese market by 2030. Groupe Renault has sold close to 270,000 EVs in the world since 2011. It has a strong competitive advantage in China as it also launched Renault City K-ZE – the first joint venture EV car competing in A segment with the local automakers.

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Groupe Renault expects to reinforce its partnership with Nissan and Dongfeng within eGT to make K-ZE available worldwide. A derivative for Europe based on “Dacia Spring” concept will be sold from 2021.

China’s LCV market grew to 3.3 million in 2019 and is forecasted to maintain a steady upwards path. Renault Brilliance Jinbei Automotive Co., Ltd. (RBJAC), launched in December 2017, is Groupe Renault’s contender for its LCV business in China.

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