By on January 18, 2018

Carlos Ghosn

Despite Volkswagen delivering an impressive 10.74 million vehicles in 2017, Nissan-Renault Alliance head Carlos Ghosn says his automotive group was actually the top sales dog. VW managed a 4.3-percent increase over last year’s volume and set a new record for itself, but Ghosn argues that doesn’t matter if it’s counting heavy truck sales in its total sum.

“The [Renault-Nissan] alliance, with more than 10.6 million light private and commercial vehicles sold in 2017, is the premier global automobile group,” the CEO told a parliamentary committee hearing in Paris.

“That has just been confirmed after Volkswagen this morning announced its sales of 10.74 million, including 200,000 heavy trucks, which we do not include in our statistics,” Ghosn explained, before adding “there can be no further discussion.”

While the CEO’s savage burn on Volkswagen is accurate, had the alliance included heavy trucks as part of its final tally, the auto group wouldn’t be quite as smug. Renault sold its heavy trucking business off years ago and, after changing hands a few times, it is currently owned by Volvo.

However, even without the inclusion of trucks, it was a close race and largely dependent upon Nissan-Renault’s acquisition of Mitsubishi Motors. Meanwhile, Toyota Motor Corp said it expected 2017 sales to grow by 2 percent last month for a grand total of 10.35 million units worldwide between its many brands. It’s anticipating an expanded volume of 10.5 million vehicles for 2018.

[Source: Reuters] [Image: Nissan]

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27 Comments on “Ghosn Says Nissan’s Alliance Makes It the Biggest Dog in the Auto Yard...”

  • avatar

    Nissan is a dog. Glad Ghosn made that explicit.

    Before that admission it was just implicit.

    And just when you thought the Renault Alliance was a dead dog.

  • avatar

    If you want to get technical, perhaps you should only include the Mitsubishi vehicles made after Nissan/Renault bought them. But really, it’s just another d*ck measuring contest.

  • avatar

    I paraphrase PT Barnum: A sucker enters a Nissan/Renault/Mitsubishi dealer every .049 minutes (i.e. number of minutes per year / 10.6 million sales).

  • avatar

    I dont understand why everyone here hates Nissan so much. They mainly target the vast majority of buyers who are not enthusiasts and who just want reliable, affordable transportation with better than average fuel economy. That strategy is obviously working for them. My experience with Nissan is limited to one vehicle but it has been great….a 14 year old Titan with tow and off road packages that has never had a breakdown or malfunction. I have upgraded the brakes to 14″, added Firestone airbags and changed the shocks to Bilsteins but thats it. Ive never had a Ford, Chevy, or Dodge truck go that long without issues.

    • 0 avatar
      Marcin Laszuk

      Because they’re nothing but rebodied Renaults now and apparently every Renault in existence is that Alliance that your next door neighbor hated back in 1988, doncha know?

      • 0 avatar

        I didnt realize that Renault made full size pickups so apparently Ive been towing and hauling with a Renault since 2004

        • 0 avatar
          Marcin Laszuk

          Well, you haven’t; but thanks to TTAC commenters at least you know where to put the blame if something goes wrong! After all, 10 times out of 10 if Nissan does something wrong, it’s Renault’s fault :)

          • 0 avatar

            You are right about that…lol. Its strange how the top two car makers….Nissan/Renault and VW receive the lions share of hate from the TTAC commenters. Africa, India, and Brazil have some of the worst roads in the world yet horrible old Renault is a major player in those parts of the world….go figure.

      • 0 avatar

        I dunno. How many times do you need to repeat the same mistake, to learn from it?

        Renault: Dauphine; R10; Le Car; Alliance. Every time they had a new angle – first, full-page Mea Culpas; then “T’ank Hay-ven for Liddle Carz” – and then, Made In “Murrika.

        What they NEVER tried, was quality of engineering and materials.

        So…the current round…hiding behind the Nissan badge, even as JDPowers stats show Nissan becoming Renault, instead of Renault learning Japanese quality…suggests that only a fool would put his money in this ripoff-rerun.

        • 0 avatar

          I wonder how Renault managed to sell 3.76 million cars last year..a increase of 8.5% from 2016. You would think that considering their bad quality of engineering and materials nobody would want to buy them.

          • 0 avatar

            How they sold them? Easy subprime lending in North America. Chauvinist buying habits (and perhaps some protectionist legislation) in France. Worldwide, the market demands far less of cars, in terms of long-term endurance, than does the United States.

            Which is why British, Indian, Italian cars that don’t hold up for half the miles of American or Asian products….why they sell in the Third World.

            Prior to EC, Renault was State owned and had aggressive protectionist tariffs protecting the domestic market. Their long-term issues were not apparent in a nation smaller than Texas, with gas so expensive (taxed) and mass-transit so prevalent (subsidized) that an auto was more a trophy than appliance, and its use more a choice than a necessity.

    • 0 avatar

      Except they DO target enthusiasts, they proclaim their cars as sporty, high in quality and fun to drive, when most certainly are not.

      Buyers who “just want reliable” but got stuck with an expensive CVT replacement or a self-destructing engine sure got what they wanted, eh?

      But, your 14 year old Titan is great so ergo all Nissans are great. Sure beats my dad’s 19 year old Ford truck with 340k on its original drivetrain.

      • 0 avatar

        I dont recall saying or implying that all Nissans are great however I think you are exaggerating their lack of reliability. Its true that the early CVT’s had issues, but weak transmissions are not exclusive to Nissan. At my last smog check there was a lady ahead of me who proudly informed me that her Honda Odessy had 275000 miles on it. I said cool…how many times have you replaced the transmission? She blushed and said three. Same thing happened to my son in laws Accord. He thinks as much of Honda as you do of Nissan.

      • 0 avatar

        Why the hate John?

        I’ve had a lot of experience with Nissan products (mainly their trucks and SUVs) and each has been perfectly reliable and my current vehicle, with the 4.0 V6, is very powerful.

        Their new models are a little gaudy for my tastes, but I’ve never had an issue with one and between me and my family growing up , we’ve probably had a collective 7 Nissan vehicles since the late 80s.

    • 0 avatar
      Arthur Dailey

      I find a general ‘hate’ or perhaps more accurately a lack of appreciation/understanding of the French auto manufacturers, among the B&B and North Americans in general.

      De-Deion Bouton had the 1st successfully mass produced V8 engine.
      Panhard in 1936 produced a monocoque car.
      Hispano-Suiza (the French portion) invented the cast aluminium block engine and produced it with an overhead cam.

      Other French vehicles are among the most beautiful ever made and highly desirable among the collectors set. This includes Delahaye, Talbot-Lago, Panhard, Lambert and Facel-Vega.

      And then their is Bugatti, which is rivaled only by Duesenberg.

      As for existing manufacturers.

      Citroen produced some of most important cars in history. The Traction Avant, the 2cv and the DS.

      Renault invented the modern tank with the FT. Their 4cv had a rear engine set-up and styling similar to the Beetle and was supposedly independently developed. The Renault 4 was one of the all-time best selling vehicles and is still seen around the world.

      As for Nissan/Datsun. Their 240Z, 501 and the Maxima 4DSC were groundbreaking and highly regarded. Yes their switch to CVT’s was problematic. However it seems that they were just ahead of the curve as most other manufacturers are converting to CVT use. Perhaps Nissan’s experience with CVT’s will make theirs more reliable than those of companies new to this format?

    • 0 avatar

      Buy a Rogue and you will understand.

      • 0 avatar
        Arthur Dailey

        Have a Rogue and the family quite likes it, except ‘Er Indoors finds it just a little too big to drive comfortably in downtown TO. The room and seating position in the back seat have been a revelation.

  • avatar

    Hey Carlos: BFD.

    Readers outside NA: are the products of this company also perceived as junk for subprime buyers in your region?

    • 0 avatar
      Marcin Laszuk

      As for Western and Central Europe, I’d say this:
      -Nissan is not as badly thought of as in the US, although they are basically a one-trick pony of a make: they have a ridiculously popular Qashqai small crossover; the rest of their “taller” offerings has been rather well-received as well and sell respectably without setting the market on fire. Their cars clearly play second fiddle to the crossovers and their sales reflect that.
      -Infitini sells in satisfactory numbers in Poland and Russia (as far as I remember) and absolutely nowhere else. So far, it’s been a dud but their newest, smallest crossover (what else?) – QX30 – has been reasonably successful. They’ve got a long way to go to even make a dent in the established makes’ sales, though.
      -Renault – it’s still recovering from the image problems of the 90s and early noughties. I know that they sell a lot of cars to fleets, not sure about the subprime markets but the French have traditionally been pushing hard in this segment, for better of worse.
      -Dacia – created to compete in the developing markets, yet became suprisingly popular in France and in other wealthier markets (although less so). Not sure about subprime but they sell the absolute cheapest cars on the markets so I’d be surprised if the subprime borrowers didn’t make up a large part of their customer base.
      -Mitsubishi – apart from some niche models that managed to find some popularity in single markets (e.g. Outlander PHEV in the UK) they’re barely seeling enough to keep the lights on in the showrooms. I don’t know what kind of customer buys a Mitsu in Europe because hardly anyone ever does.

      • 0 avatar

        “Mitsubishi – apart from some niche models that managed to find some popularity in single markets (e.g. Outlander PHEV in the UK) they’re barely seeling enough to keep the lights on in the showrooms. I don’t know what kind of customer buys a Mitsu in Europe because hardly anyone ever does.”

        How Mitsu stayed in business for so long I have no idea. I guess I always figured they must be a money-laundering front for the Yakuza.

  • avatar

    Just because you are big doesn’t mean you make good cars.

  • avatar

    You can probably still find a new 2012 Mitsubishi Eclipse on a lot somewhere.

  • avatar

    If they are so big why does he keep trying to merge/partner up with another maker?

    I own 2 Nissans which I love. These vehicle aren’t junk and I’m not a subprime buyer either. However since Nissan doesn’t make the Camry or Golf they should just give up and shut down I guess.

  • avatar

    “The [Renault-Nissan] alliance, with more than 10.6 million light private and commercial vehicles sold in 2017…”

    So, commercial sales are okay if they’re your commercial sales. In other words, you sold more Altimas than any other midsize cars to rental fleets, and that is acceptable, but VAG selling big trucks to companies shouldn’t count.

    In that case, lets twist this and subtract that but add this and not that, so the Toyota 86 is the best selling car in the world. Brilliant.

  • avatar

    Mr. Ghosn looks very “gangsta” in that picture.

  • avatar

    I was thinking he just yelled at Clouseau.

    • 0 avatar

      Dreyfus: The beggar was the lookout man for the gang.
      Clouseau: That is impossible.
      Dreyfus: Why?
      Clouseau: He was blind. How can a blind man be a lookout?
      Dreyfus: How can an idiot be a policeman? Answer me that!
      Clouseau: It’s very simple, all he has to do is enlist…
      Dreyfus: Shut up!

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