TOKYO - Renault aims to boost its sales in Japan to 15,000 in 2004 and 30,000 over the long term by selling its models at Nissan Motor Co. outlets.
That long-term goal would represent a 10-fold increase. It would make Renault one of the top import brands in Japan.
Renault, which owns a controlling 34 percent of Nissan, sold 3,025 imports in Japan in 1999.
Until now, France Motors, a wholly-owned unit of Yanase & Co., sold Renaults in Japan. That arrangement will continue over a transition period of three years. Renault Japon, a new wholly owned Renault subsidiary, is taking over the importation of Renault cars in Japan. It will invest FF60 million (A38 million) over three years to do so. Nissan will handle distribution.
Roberto Pallotta, formerly sales and marketing director of Renault Italy, heads Renault Japon.
In 2000, about 50 Nissan outlets will sell Renaults in Japan, in addition to the France Motors outlets. The network of Nissan outlets will grow to over 100 by 2002,and more than 150 after that.
DaimlerChrysler was Japan's top auto importer last year, with sales of 59,733. Its Mercedes-Benz imports alone totaled 53,474.