Renault predicts that European auto market will fall 5% this year.
Renault’s global deliveries dropped 6.3% last year to 2.25 million vehicles, but the automaker said it expects European market this year to be “slightly better” and that the other three quarters will be better compared with the first one. In February Renault said it expects European auto market to fall 3% this year and that global auto market will increase 3%.
“We are having a product blitz, introducing new models this year,” said CEO Carlos Tavares. Renault is broadening its product range by reviving the Alpine sports-car label and developing the Initiale Paris insignia into a full-fledged luxury brand, he said. Initiale will come to the market in a “10 to 15 years of time range,” he said.
Renault expects its sales of EVs to double this year, including the Fluence and Zoe models, from 18,000 units sold last year. The French automaker is also considering building light commercial vehicles in Turkey, where its JV Oyak-Renault Otomobil Fabrikalari already manufactures the Clio 4 and Fluence models. Car and van sales in Turkey are expected to increase 3% to 780,000 units in 2013, after the region’s auto market fell 11.5% to 815,000 units in 2012.