- Title: Trade barriers would cause rethink on Sunderland plant, says Renault-Nissan CEO
- Date: 29th September 2016
- Summary: PARIS, FRANCE (SEPTEMBER 29, 2016) (REUTERS) SOUNDBITE (English) OLA KAELLENIUS, HEAD OF MARKETING AND MEMBER OF BOARD, DAIMLER AG, SAYING: "In the first 8 months of this year we have had double digit growth for Mercedes Benz, which is actually a trend we've had now for the last three years. So we're very very satisfied with the growth that we've been able to achieve up until this point. And with innovative technology, and a variety of product portfolio, beautiful design and a very attractive brand, we are optimistic that we can continue growing over the next few years."
- Embargoed: 14th October 2016 15:06
- Keywords: Auto show Paris Carlos Ghosn Renault-Nissan Mercedes BMW executives Brexit
- Location: PARIS, FRANCE
- City: PARIS, FRANCE
- Country: France
- Topics: Company News Markets,Economic Events
- Reuters ID: LVA00451MBPN1
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: A tax imposed on British goods entering the European Union could be detrimental to Nissan's presence in the UK, Renault-Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn said on Thursday (September 29) when asked what kind of Brexit deal could change the company's commitment to its Sunderland plant.
"Well if it was for example tax imposed on products coming from the UK to Europe it would be something very detrimental to the development of our presence in the UK."
Ghosn was speaking at the Paris Auto Show, where the automaker unveiled its larger, plusher French-built update to its Nissan Micra subcompact.
Nissan's car manufacturing plant in Sunderland is the UK's largest, producing 500,000 vehicles a year.
A weaker pound since Britain's June referendum vote to leave the European Union poses an additional profit and pricing challenge for imported vehicles.
"I don't know what's going to be the situation of Brexit. I don't know. So it's very difficult to make decisions in terms of investment. Or envisage the future if you don't know how the relationship is going to be between the UK, and the main trade partner of the UK which is the rest of Europe. In our case, Sunderland, 80 percent of the cars produced in Sunderland are exported to Europe. So it's a very important decision for us", said Ghosn.
The concerns over Brexit were echoed by BMW, after unveiling its new X2 SUV concept car.
"This is a situation that I think will now be in discussions, negotiations for one or two years. Article 50 hasn't been triggered yet. But what we hope is that out of it, comes a relationship between the UK and Europe, which still has limited trade and influences. So you know, if possible, the same conditions as we have at the moment. Equally in terms of legislation, we do not want to see different legislation around a European context. And I think ultimately, the relationship between Europe and the UK should be in a position that not only supports the industrial base but supports society in general. But it's early days", said BMW Management Board Member Ian Robertson.
Carmakers were optimistic, though, about the market in general.
"You know this year we're going to be selling 89 million cars as an industry overall. I think next year we're going to be crossing the 90 million cars probably approaching 91 million cars. So it's going to be a moderate growth, about 2 percent, unevenly distributed. Obviously China and India are going to be pulling ahead. Europe recovery will continue but at a slower pace. United States will be stabilising at a very high level. And I think Japan, Brazil and Russia, which have known a decrease of their market in the last few years, will probably also stabilise, at the very low level. So overall, I would say moderate growth for next year", said Ghosn.
Daimler on Wednesday (September 28) said it was working on a new "hypercar" and also plans to expand its range of upmarket AMG Mercedes-Benz performance cars by at least 10 models.
The hypercar, due to be produced in about 2.5 years' time, will have the powertrain of the current Mercedes-Benz Formula 1 car with a modified gearbox and it will be made from carbon fibre.
The company also unveiled the new Mercedes-AMG GT Roadster in Paris. This is an open-top version of the car with a 476 horsepower engine.
"In the first 8 months of this year we have had double digit growth for Mercedes Benz, which is actually a trend we've had now for the last three years. So we're very, very satisfied with the growth that we've been able to achieve up until this point. And with innovative technology, and a variety of product portfolio, beautiful design and a very attractive brand, we are optimistic that we can continue growing over the next few years", said Ola Kaellenius, Head of Marketing and member of Daimler's management board.
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
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