Nissan Motor will standardise and share electric-vehicle components with alliance partner Renault, the Japanese company’s COO said, describing electrification to Reuters as the partnership’s new lynchpin.
The Franco-Japanese alliance, which also includes Mitsubishi Motors, was strained in the aftermath of the arrest and ouster of former chairman Carlos Ghosn. Since then, the coronavirus pandemic has provided an impetus to rebuild the collaboration, and the companies have looked to standardise parts and platforms to cut costs, Reuters noted.
Nissan has already been sharing common platforms, powertrains and components with Renault and Mitsubishi, but those efforts have “reached the maximum we should do,” Ashwani Gupta, Nissan’s COO, told Reuters in an interview.
“That’s why we are shifting the gear of further synergies using electrification as the main pillar,” he added.
The focus would be on sharing batteries, electric powertrains and electronic architecture, he told Reuters, adding adopting a uniform standard across the alliance would “contribute significantly” to economies of scale.
Gupta said electrification would not pose a supply challenge because of Nissan’s global sourcing of components. He said it had battery sourcing in China, Japan, Europe and the United States.
Together the alliance sold 7.8m cars last year, down about 23% from 2019 as the companies were hit by the pandemic, Reuters said.
Nissan, one of the world’s first car makers to embrace fully EVs with its Leaf model, will share the platform of its upcoming all-electric Ariya SUV with Renault, Reuters reported.
EV battery development has been one of the weaker points of the more than 20-year alliance, with both Nissan and Renault sourcing batteries separately, the report said.
Renault chief executive Luca de Meo said this month the two companies were in talks to collaborate more by using the same battery technology and Gupta said in the interview with Reuters they had agreed on the common specifications of batteries.
Gupta also said that while keeping the distinctiveness of each brand was important in the alliance, the automakers would share “to eliminate the duplication of resources”.
Reuters noted Nissan had said it would electrify all new models in key markets by the early 2030s. It expects yearly sales of more than 1m electrified vehicles by the end of fiscal 2023.