– Teams will work closely on development of next-generation compact vehicles for both Mercedes-Benz and Infiniti;
– New plant in Aguascalientes, Mexico, will add nearly 5,700 additional workers and annual capacity of 300,000 vehicles when fully ramped up;
– Companies will equally divide investment costs of approximately €1 billion.
MEXICO CITY —-– The Renault-Nissan Alliance and Daimler AG are significantly expanding their cooperation with joint development of premium compact vehicles and joint production in Mexico.
Renault-Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn and Daimler CEO Dieter Zetsche announced that their companies have agreed to establish a 50:50 joint venture, the business entity that will oversee construction and operation of the new plant in Aguascalientes in north-central Mexico. The new plant will be built in the immediate vicinity of an already existing Nissan plant and will have an annual capacity of 300,000 vehicles when fully ramped up.
Start of production is planned for 2017 with Infiniti models. The production of Mercedes-Benz brand vehicles will follow in 2018.
Daimler and Nissan will share the total investment cost for Aguascalientes of approximately €1 billion. The companies will add almost 5,700 jobs (including engineering, line workers and support staff) by the time the plant reaches full capacity, expected in 2021. In addition, a high localisation rate will significantly increase the Mexican supply base.
Carlos Ghosn, Chairman and CEO of the Renault-Nissan Alliance: “Joint development of compact premium vehicles and joint production in Aguascalientes together represent one of the largest projects between the Renault-Nissan Alliance and Daimler. It also shows how our collaboration, which began in Europe, has become global in scope.”
Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars: “In Aguascalientes, we will take our successful partnership to the next level by combining the skills of our two companies Daimler and Nissan in one production plant. Just over four years after the cooperation was founded, the decision for the new plant in Mexico is a major milestone.”
Close collaboration between Infiniti and Mercedes-Benz at every stage of development, from advanced research and design to production, will ensure that vehicles within the scope of the project will clearly differ from each other in terms of product design and specifications.
Growing together in Mexico
In Aguascalientes both partners will enjoy access to Nissan’s award-winning, highly efficient workforce. Nissan has been producing vehicles in Aguascalientes since 1992, and the plant has expanded significantly just in the past year.
In November, Nissan opened the first stage of a US$2 billion manufacturing complex in Aguascalientes. This increased Nissan’s total capacity in Mexico to more than 850,000 vehicles annually.
Mexico is already an important market for Daimler. The company has production plants for trucks and buses in Saltillo, Santiago Tianguistenco and Garcia, a parts distribution centre in San Luis Potosí and a remanufacturing plant in Toluca. For passenger cars Daimler has a pre-delivery-inspection and a training centre.
Four years of increasing collaboration
The French-Japanese-German industrial cooperation of Daimler and the Renault-Nissan Alliance began in April 2010, with three “pillar projects” primarily focused on Europe. Since then, the portfolio has increased to twelve significant projects, including major initiatives from the Americas to Japan.
Just yesterday, Infiniti and Daimler launched production of four-cylinder gasoline engines in Decherd, Tennessee, USA. With an annual production capacity of 250,000 units, the Decherd facility produces engines for use in the Mercedes-Benz C-Class and in the Infiniti Q50.
Later this year, the Alliance and Daimler will start selling the next-generation smart and Twingo city cars, developed on a shared platform, the Twingo and the four-seater smart being produced at the Renault plant in Novo Mesto, Slovenia, the two-seater smart in Hambach, France.
Daimler AG is one of the world’s most successful automotive companies. With its divisions Mercedes-Benz Cars, Daimler Trucks, Mercedes-Benz Vans, Daimler Buses and Daimler Financial Services, the Daimler Group is one of the biggest producers of premium cars and the world’s biggest manufacturer of commercial vehicles with a global reach. Daimler Financial Services provides financing, leasing, fleet management, insurance and innovative mobility services. The company’s founders, Gottlieb Daimler and Carl Benz, made history with the invention of the automobile in the year 1886. As a pioneer of automotive engineering, Daimler continues to shape the future of mobility today: The Group’s focus is on innovative and green technologies as well as on safe and superior automobiles that appeal to and fascinate its customers. For many years now, Daimler has been investing continually in the development of alternative drive systems with the goal of making emission-free driving possible in the long term. So in addition to vehicles with hybrid drive, Daimler now has the broadest range of locally emission-free electric vehicles powered by batteries and fuel cells. This is just one example of how Daimler willingly accepts the challenge of meeting its responsibility towards society and the environment. Daimler sells its vehicles and services in nearly all the countries of the world and has production facilities on five continents. Its current brand portfolio includes, in addition to the world’s most valuable premium automotive brand, Mercedes-Benz, the brands smart, Freightliner, Western Star, BharatBenz, Fuso, Setra and Thomas Built Buses. The company is listed on the stock exchanges of Frankfurt and Stuttgart (stock exchange symbol DAI). In 2013, the Group sold 2.35 million vehicles and employed a workforce of 274,616 people; revenue totaled €118.0 billion and EBIT amounted to €10.8 billion.
About The Renault-Nissan Alliance
The Renault-Nissan Alliance is a strategic partnership between Renault (based in Paris, France) and Nissan (based in Yokohama, Japan), which together sell one in ten cars worldwide. Renault and Nissan have been strategic partners since 1999 and sold 8.3 million cars in nearly 200 countries in 2013. The Alliance operates strategic collaborations with numerous automakers, including Germany’s Daimler, China’s Dongfeng, and with regional manufacturers such as Ashok Leyland in India.