Renault-Nissan cancels ultra low-cost car partnership with Bajaj Auto image

Renault-Nissan announced it has decided to end the collaboration with Bajaj Auto for sourcing of an ultra low-cost car, focusing on options in countries such as China and Russia instead.

“We have decided against further collaboration with Bajaj on a four-wheeler vehicle. Outside India, the Renault-Nissan Alliance is addressing « price-entry » segments in many emerging economies, such as Indonesia, China and Russia,” said a Nissan Motor spokesperson.

In China, Nissan and its joint-venture partner Dongfeng have already launched two vehicles under the Venucia Brand (D40 and D50). In Russia, collaboration between Renault-Nissan and AvtoVAZ is already making progress on vehicles to be launched under the Datsun brand, Nissan said.

Bajaj Auto managing director Rajiv Bajaj declined to comment on the issue, only saying that he has not heard from Renault-Nissan. According to the 2009 agreement, Bajaj Auto was supposed to design, develop and manufacture the ultra low-cost car, while Renault-Nissan would sell it under their badging.

Since then, Bajaj Auto started developing the RE60 ultra low-cost car but the Indian manufacturer remained uncertain if Renault-Nissan would source the product to sell in India and similar global markets.

The mini four-wheeler RE60 was unveiled in January this year at the Auto Expo in New Delhi. Powered by a 200-cc rear mounted gasoline engine and capable of a top speed of 70 km/h, the RE60 is described by Bajaj as a commercial vehicle meant for passenger transportation.