Renault-Nissan, an alliance between the French and Japanese auto makers, revealed its plans of doubling its investments in the Indian car market. The Renault-Nissan alliance aims at expanding its operations in India by way of making a huge investment of $5 billion, which will span over the next five years. This venture will include the addition on the production capacity and the launch of a number of new vehicles.
The alliance has been involved in the development of a new platform, called CMF-A, for high-growth markets, which has been conceptualised and executed from scratch. Renault-Nissan also revealed that it is working on the production of an ultra-low cost car that would be priced slightly above the Tata Nano. Carlos Ghosn, the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Renault-Nissan alliance, explained, “We have been investing in India .... The Chennai plant, technical centre and the new platform CMF-A and others for introducing new models, so far we have invested $2.5 billion in the country.”
He elaborated on the high number of vehicles that are going to be launched in the Indian car market by both, Renault and Nissan. “There are so many products coming. Nissan has already said 10 cars by 2016 and Renault is also planning to bring many more. So our overall investments of $2.5 billion in India will double in the next five years," he said.
Responding to the queries regarding the new CMF-A platform for car production, Ghosn said, “This is a completely new platform developed in India, using the Indian engineering and local suppliers supported by Renault- Nissan."
Renault-Nissan's CMF-A platform aims to cater to the requirements of first-timer car buyers in some of the fastest growing auto markets of the world. No definitive decision has been taken with respect to the brand under which these cars will be launched. However, the first car based on the CMF-A platform is slated to come out from the plant in Chennai, by the year 2015. The company has already conceptualised two products, which could be under the brands Nissan, Renault or the recently launched Datsun. According to reports, the cars based on this new platform will be tested in markets like Indonesia, Brazil and South Africa. On the successful completion of this test, the company would go on to continue manufacturing of these cars globally.
As far as the production of the ultra-low cost car is concerned, Ghosn informed that the firm is still working on the idea. "We are still sticking to the idea of a ULC, not only for India but for all the high growth markets," he explained. On being asked about its potential competition with the Tata Nano, he added, “The product will be much better but the pricing will not be very far from the lowest cost product available in the market."