Groupe Renault and Brilliance China Automotive Holdings Limited (Brilliance) have confirmed signing a contract for the formation of a joint venture to manufacture and sell light commercial vehicles (LCV) under the Jinbei, Renault and Huasong brands with the goal of achieving 150,000 sales annually by 2022 and an acceleration of electrifying powertrains.
The CPC Liaoning Provincial Committee and Liaoning provincial government have supported creation of the JV that will bring additional economic development to this area in northeast China, and Chen Qiufa, Secretary of the CPC Liaoning Provincial Committee; Tang Yijun, acting governor of Liaoning Province; and other officials participated in the inauguration ceremonies.
The new JV will be known as Renault-Brilliance-Jinbei Automotive Co., Ltd. with manufacturing operations in the Dadong District of Shenyang and will locally produce three key segments—MPVs, medium vans and heavy vans. The Chinese LCV market is reaching upwards of 3 million units annually.
To form the JV, Groupe Renault is purchasing a 49 percent equity interest in Shenyang Brilliance Jinbei Automobile Co. Co., Ltd. (SBJ). SBJ is being restructured into a JV owned 51 percent by Brilliance China and 49 percent by Groupe Renault. The companies had signed a framework cooperation agreement to pursue the formation of the joint venture in July of this year.
Thierry Aubry has been named CEO of the JV. Aubry’s background includes retail, manufacturing and distribution experience in China and France.
Groupe Renault is part of the world’s largest automotive group with its Alliance including Nissan and Mitsubishi. Brilliance has made significant investment in the Jinbei brand, which has been the No.1 bus brand in China for more than a decade with an expertise in entry-cost MPVs and with leading market share in medium vans at 31 percent.
The JV provides a platform for the partners to bring complementary strengths together with Brilliance delivering an existing dealer network of 220, project engineering capability and manufacturing capacity. As demand in China increases for Europe-style vans and LCVs that meet higher safety, emissions and energy-efficiency standards, Renault brings expertise in new technologies, core engineering capability and business management expertise. The JV’s first focus will be to invigorate the Jinbei brand and then to manufacture Renault LCVs in China by 2020.
Groupe Renault celebrates its 120-year anniversary in 2018 and has been making LCVs since 1900. The company is a global LCV leader that has a full line-up of vans and pick-ups with 10 LCV models including four EVs.