By Chris King • 14 January 2022 • 19:19
Renault is not the first brand, neither will it be the last, to announce that it will stop selling combustion-only cars in Europe in 2030. The need to adapt to the race for electrification will see the diamond brand dedicate itself to selling purely electric or hybrid vehicles within eight years.
This was announced today, Friday, January 14, by Luca de Meo, the CEO of the French company. He spoke of “the obligation to participate in decarbonisation”, to adapt to the demanding European regulations.
De Meo acknowledged that Dacia – which offers more affordable vehicles – will have greater flexibility in the group to respond to market demand. Until 2030, it will continue to manufacture and sell vehicles with combustion engines.
To deal with electrification, there are still pending issues, such as the lack of infrastructure in many European countries, especially in the east and south. De Meo considered that “it is a problem” for the development of electric vehicles. The price is also an issue, which is higher in electric than in combustion models.
The company has decided on using the north of France for the production of 100 per cent electric cars. The idea is to start manufacturing nine models in the 2022-2024 period, with the intention of producing more than 400,000 by 2025.
According to Jose Vicente de los Mozos, Renault’s industrial manager, the Spanish plants will focus on producing hybrid cars. “This is where we have seen that there is a value chain. The technology of hybrid engines is transitional,” he said. In the longer term, the Spanish plants will be reconverted to produce electric cars.
Precisely, Luca de Meo wanted to highlight from the Renaulution transformation plan, the reconditioning of vehicles, which will be the centre of activity at its Flins factory, west of Paris. 2,000 modified cars have already been produced there last year, and for which the goal is 45,000 units per year. “We are going to do the same in Sevilla”, De Meo assured.
Those responsible for the company admit that with the current crisis it is foreseeable that the market for used cars will increase, and the reconditioning will allow the life of the vehicles to be extended. For example, changing a combustion engine for another with more modern technology.
De Meo also emphasised the problem of the shortage of semiconductors , admitting that in 2021 they stopped producing 500,000 vehicles. He pointed out that supply problems will last beyond 2022. “We think that we are going to have disturbances throughout the year, but especially in the first semester”.
This issue of chips has slightly disrupted the terms of the Renaulution plan. Despite this, De Meo commented today on the “depth” of the changes that have occurred in these twelve months. He assured that the first financial objectives have already been met. “We have achieved a €2 billion reduction in fixed costs”, he concluded, as reported by laopiniondemalaga.es.
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Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news.
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