“Groupe Renault has been investing and expanding in China for four years now with joint ventures focused on passenger cars commercial vehicles and electric vehicles" - Renault chairman and CEO Carlos Ghosn

“Groupe Renault has been investing and expanding in China for four years now with joint ventures focused on passenger cars commercial vehicles and electric vehicles" - Renault chairman and CEO Carlos Ghosn

Renault and Brilliance China Automotive Holdings [BMW's car JV partner] have inked a joint venture to manufacture and sell light commercial vehicles (LCV) using Jinbei, Renault and Huasong brands aiming for 150,000 sales annually by 2022 and an acceleration of electrifying powertrains.

The CPC Liaoning Provincial Committee and Liaoning provincial government have supported the creation of the JV, which will bring additional economic development to North East China.

The new JV will be known as Renault-Brilliance-Jinbei Automotive with manufacturing operations in the Dadong District of Shenyang and will produce three key segments locally—MPVs, medium vans and heavy vans. The Chinese LCV market is moving towards 3m units annually.

To form the JV, Groupe Renault is purchasing a 49% equity interest in Shenyang Brilliance Jinbei Automobile (SBJ). SBJ is being restructured into a JV owned 51% by Brilliance China and 49% by Groupe Renault. The companies signed a framework cooperation agreement to pursue the formation of the joint venture in July this year.

Thierry Aubry has been named CEO of the JV, with his background including retail, manufacturing and distribution experience in China and France.

"Groupe Renault has been investing and expanding in China for four years now with joint ventures focused on passenger cars, commercial vehicles and electric vehicles," said Groupe Renault Carlos Ghosn.

"The Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance gives us access to a wide array of technologies, with more than EUR50bn in R&D investment over the next six years, part of which will enable Renault-Brilliance-Jinbei Automotive Company to develop products tailored to the Chinese market.

"We see China not only as the biggest car market worldwide, but also as a trend setter for the auto industry." 

Brilliance has made significant investment in the Jinbei brand, which has been the number one bus brand in China for more than a decade with an expertise in entry-cost MPVs and with a market share in medium vans at 31%.

"Brilliance and Groupe Renault are joining hands to build a world-class model for the development of LCVs," said Brilliance chairman, Qi Yumin. "It will change the map of the Chinese and even global LCV market.

"Both companies will build the joint venture into a leader in three areas: commercial vehicles, new energy commercial vehicles and customised commercial vehicles. This partnership will create huge economic and social benefits, accelerating the development of automotive industry in Liaoning Province and China." 

The JV provides a platform for the partners to bring complementary strengths together with Brilliance delivering an existing dealer network of 220 outlets, project engineering capability and manufacturing capacity.

As demand in China increases for Europe-style vans and LCVs which meet higher safety, emissions and energy-efficiency standards, Renault brings new technologies, core engineering capability and business management know-how.

The JV's first focus will be to invigorate the Jinbei brand and then to manufacture Renault LCVs in China by 2020.

Groupe Renault celebrates its 120-year anniversary next year and has been making LCVs since 1900.