Renault aims to be Europe's No. 2 brand by unit sales after Volkswagen, a goal that Opel CEO Karl-Thomas Neumann also has set for his brand. Renault Europe Chairman Stefan Mueller spoke with Automotive News Europe Correspondent Jennifer Clark about how Renault will get there.
What are Renault's targets in Europe?
We have a clear goal: to be Europe's second-largest brand by 2017. We want to do that by increasing our profitability. Our 2017 goal is to achieve a 5 percent operating profit margin on a 50 billion euro turnover.
How will you get to No. 2?
We are rejuvenating our lineup with the Clio and Captur. We have done very well with them. We also are introducing higher-margin models such as the new Trafic van and the new Espace. We will need other products beyond these four cars to achieve our profitability.
Will the fast-growing Dacia brand help?
With Dacia, we don’t expect to continue with this level of growth every year, but our target is for Dacia to be No. 1 in its entry-level category in 2017.
How do you see the European market developing in the next five years?
We believe the market hit bottom in 2013. I see positive signs in Germany, the UK and Spain. But in other markets, I see a lot of question marks. For planning purposes, we assume the market will be flat for the next five years. We aim to get ever leaner in process and cost management. We expect things to be better, but do we have it in our planning? No.