Following Nissan and Renault’s new partnership deal, Nissan has invested in Renault’s EV development unit, showing the Japanese brand’s intent to grow its EV focus under the new structure.
Nissan and Renault have had a strange and, at times, uneasy partnership. But thanks to a new deal set to place the two corporations as near equals in the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Group, Nissan has already used the new structure to expand its focus on EVs. The Japanese automaker announced that it would be investing in Renault’s EV development unit, which could allow it to expand its EV offerings globally.
According to Reuters, who reported Nissan’s investment initially, Nissan will be taking 15 percent of the Renault EV unit named “Ampere.” Neither company made financial information available, but it is set to benefit both quite greatly.
There has been no time for Renault with a greater need for capital. Despite being the controlling brand in the Renault/Nissan alliance ever since it bailed out the Japanese carmaker, it has since fallen behind Nissan in terms of global sales. With added cash to put towards the EV transition, which is becoming increasingly important in Europe, Renault has been given a chance it needs to double down on its EV investment.
As for Nissan, not only has it gained access to increased EV research and development capabilities, but thanks to the more equal partnership, it may now gain access to Renault’s already developed EVs. This could allow the Japanese brand to expand its EV offerings in Europe, improve its global electric vehicle capabilities, and even expand in North America.
“We regard Ampere as an enabler for Nissan to participate in new business opportunities in Europe,” Nissan CEO Makoto Uchida told Reuters.
While Nissan has introduced new EV models in its home market of Japan, it has yet to offer more than 2 EVs in North America and Europe.
While the previous alliance between the brands was notoriously aggressive, epitomized by the forced departure of Renault-appointed Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn, this renewed partnership indicates that both companies realize the strength of working together. As both brands have suffered in recent years battling against far larger brands, cooperation may be precisely what is needed.
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