Nissan Motor is preparing the ground for French carmaker Renault’s eventual move into China [for local production], Dow Jones reported today, citing Renault-Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn.
When the decision is made by Renault to go to China, “we are going to find a network of suppliers, a network of dealers and a manufacturing base and a system for us to move very quickly,” thanks to Nissan’s presence, he said. Renault now only has its imported cars sold in China.
As head of both companies that form the Renault-Nissan Alliance, Ghosn told an analysts’ meeting that Renault must first ensure its development in other parts of the world is deeply rooted. Renault is investing heavily in Russia, India and other markets.
“Every time I go to China as head of Nissan I explain [to Chinese officials] that one day Renault will come and they know it and they are expecting it. They know that we’re going to share a lot of the assets and everything is ready.”
“We have to be ready to make a great performance” in China, now the world’s largest auto market, he added. Nissan is the No. 1 Japanese carmaker in China, with sales in 2009 up 39% to 756,000 vehicles, and 1 million units are expected this year.
Nissan’s China venture with Dongfeng Motor Group now has two passenger car plants with combined capacity of about 460,000 units. It also has a 240,000-unit facility under construction that will be completed by 2012.