Blog: Glenn BrooksWill the next French presidential limo be Korean?

Glenn Brooks | 14 June 2011

Soon to be gliding in to the Élysée Palace?

Soon to be gliding in to the Élysée Palace?

A big new Samsung isn't normally something we'd spend too much time reporting on but the second generation SM7 might well matter more than you'd think, which is why we have run a news story on it. The reason being, there is said to be another version on the way, a Renault-badged big sedan for various global markets, reportedly under development with the L47 codename.

Yet does Renault really need a pricey flagship and more to the point, can a business case be made for such a vehicle when so many others - the Safrane, Avantime and Vel Satis - have been, shall we say, less than wildly popular?

If an extra model to sit above the Renault Latitude does reach production, the French state, as shareholder-in-chief, would surely be obliged to stick with tradition and run the car as le nouveau ride du (or indeed de la) Prez. In which case, its cosseted occupant would be enthroned in a car that for the first time is not built on French soil. Does that matter? Maybe not, but what it would represent would greatly anger the leaders of a certain Paris-based organisation.

The CGT (Confédération Générale du Travail) was not exactly thrilled with Renault management over decisions taken to build certain high-priced or high-tech models such as the Latitude sedan (Korea), Fluence Z.E. plug-in sedan (Turkey) and Wind roadster (Slovenia) outside France. If this powerful union, allied to the ever-present nationalist elements in the French press, decides to show its displeasure over an imported luxury car in the coming 3-12 months, the ensuing war of words might well turn nasty.


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