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Renault to be locally made for China market.

April 28, 2008 - Renault-Nissan CEO, Carlos Ghosn, said last week at the Beijing auto show that Renault cars will be introduced to China for local production and Reanult will cooperate further with China's Dongfeng Motors Group.

Although it has expanded its Russian and Indian markets, French carmaker Renault believes that China is a fast-growing auto market and has huge potential for Renault products. The joint venture between Renault and Dongfeng will be cemented and Renault's new products must be introduced to China for local production. The local maker of Renault must be Nissan's Chinese partner Dongfeng Motors, said Ghosn.

Renault and Dongfeng Motors had signed a preliminary deal in 2004 to build 300,000 cars a year in southern China. But the plan was postponed as the two partners could not agree on a site for the plant. If the new plan for Renault to be locally made by Dongfeng is a certainty, the current key issue to be addressed is what products and technologies of Renault should be introduced into China for the local production.

Renault plans to sell 3.3 million cars and increase its profitability to six percent by 2009 worldwide, fueled by emerging markets like India, Russia, and Iran, where Renault has already invested heavily since 2006.

Dong Motors' Hubei-based firm, Dongfeng Auto, in which Renault Trucks and Nissan Motor hold combined 50% stake, achieved revenue of 12.79 billion yuan ($1.83 billion) in 2007, up 26.55% year-on-year.

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As I read it Renault will stop producing combustion engine cars in China. Maybe they'll keep making a small number of electric cars with the seperate eGT joint venture. I think they say they're keeping dealerships, so probably some models may be imported from elsewhere (South Korea/Samsung-Renault). But it's unclear from the press release. They're basically saying "we're shutting down the Dongfeng Renault joint venture and we'll figure the rest out later".
Dongfeng Group plans to potentially use the Dongfeng-Renault factory in Wuhan for its new "H" business unit. The "H" business unit was conceptualized about a year ago to explore opportunities in the high-end, new energy car market. Dongfeng, which is reportedly planning to introduce up to 9 new products under this umbrella, is said to have benchmarked the likes of Hongqi and Tesla for this purpose.

If anybody is wondering about the fate of the electric quintuplets, Renault has said in its press release that eGT will continue.
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