French carmaker Renault is planning to manufacture more than 70 percent of its Clio subcompacts in Turkey, according to Automotive Business Review.
The French government holds 15 percent of Renault, and the carmaker’s decision to shift production to lower-wage countries isn’t likely to go down well with French authorities.
In 2011, French plants accounted for 42 percent of Renault’s overall European deliveries, compared to PSA Peugeot Citroen’s 64 percent. Peugeot announced 8,000 job cuts and a plant closure earlier this year.
Back in 2010, Renault CEO Carlos Ghosn was summoned by former president Nicolas Sarkozy following reports that Clio production could move abroad. “They’re obviously under pressure and may have to decide whether to build more Clios in France to keep the peace with the government,” said UK based UBS analyst Philippe Houchois.
Renault confirmed the new Clio will be manufactured simultaneously at the Flins plant in France and the Bursa plant in Turkey but didn’t offer specific details. „At this point, Renault cannot supply any figures on the share of New Renault Clio production between these two plants”, Renault said in a press release. “In Flins, production will be divided between New Renault Clio and ZOE, according to demand. In addition, Renault recently announced that Clio Collection was to be produced at Flins (Clio Longlife)”, the release added.