Renault-Nissan Working On Really Low Cost Car

renault nissan working on really low cost car

Last week, when talking about Volkswagen’s future $10,00o low-cost car, we said that “is rumored to work on something that costs about half.” Guess it is no longer a rumor. Reuters writes that Gerard Detourbet , the man behind Renault’s Logan program, is in Chennai, India, to work on a real budget car, costing about half of Volkswagen’s targeted price. India is the battlefield for low-cost cars. And that’s not because of Tata’s Nano.

Most of Suzuki’s commanding market share in India goes on account of cars costing less than 250,000 rupees ( $4,600) This segment bring Suzuki “1 million registrations a year in a market of 2.6 million,” Reuters says. Hyundai’s inroads into the India market are powered by its 300,000 rupee ($5,500) Eon mini.

Renault’s new “sub-entry” architecture will offer roomier cars for a similar price tag and spawn at least one additional model for Nissan, Detourbet told Reuters.

Despite tanking sales in Europe, Renault recorded a small auto division profit in the first half of 2012, mainly due to its low-cost car program. Peugeot lost $870 million in the same period. Detourbet, a mathematician by trade, helped Renault to achieve the allegedly impossible: How to make big money with small cars.

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  • Skink Skink on Dec 17, 2012

    And those 10 - series tires look ridiculous, too. Why do 'designers' draw that crap anymore? The rest of the car looks like a Mark I Plymouth Sebring.

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    • Wheatridger Wheatridger on Dec 17, 2012

      Because India's roads are so glassy-smooth? Or because subconsciously, we love wheels and hate tires?

  • Magnusmaster Magnusmaster on Dec 17, 2012

    Renault has already started doing this in South America with their horrible Clio 2 facelift, with the most brutal cost-cutting ever. Like removing speakers, cables exposed on the trunk, very cheap plastics, and redesigning parts of the car to reduce production costs. They even charge hundreds of dollars for fancy "customization" stickers which they don't even put correctly. I guess the Indian car will be something like this, although I don't see why they have to design the car from scratch instead of taking an existing model and butcher it. Nevertheless, I don't think these cheap cars are a good idea, especially for Nissan. At one point you end up with a rickshaw. Although those DO sell well in India...

  • Sgeffe Bronco looks with JLR “reliability!”What’s not to like?!
  • FreedMike Back in the '70s, the one thing keeping consumers from buying more Datsuns was styling - these guys were bringing over some of the ugliest product imaginable. Remember the F10? As hard as I try to blot that rolling aberration from my memory, it comes back. So the name change to Nissan made sense, and happened right as they started bringing over good-looking product (like the Maxima that will be featured in this series). They made a pretty clean break.
  • Flowerplough Liability - Autonomous vehicles must be programmed to make life-ending decisions, and who wants to risk that? Hit the moose or dive into the steep grassy ditch? Ram the sudden pile up that is occurring mere feet in front of the bumper or scan the oncoming lane and swing left? Ram the rogue machine that suddenly swung into my lane, head on, or hop up onto the sidewalk and maybe bump a pedestrian? With no driver involved, Ford/Volkswagen or GM or whomever will bear full responsibility and, in America, be ambulance-chaser sued into bankruptcy and extinction in well under a decade. Or maybe the yuge corporations will get special, good-faith, immunity laws, nation-wide? Yeah, that's the ticket.
  • FreedMike It's not that consumers wouldn't want this tech in theory - I think they would. Honestly, the idea of a car that can take over the truly tedious driving stuff that drives me bonkers - like sitting in traffic - appeals to me. But there's no way I'd put my property and my life in the hands of tech that's clearly not ready for prime time, and neither would the majority of other drivers. If they want this tech to sell, they need to get it right.
  • TitaniumZ Of course they are starting to "sour" on the idea. That's what happens when cars start to drive better than people. Humanpilots mostly suck and make bad decisions.