This man (usually) has a plan

This man (usually) has a plan

Nissan, Renault and Mitsubishi Motors (MMC) could be planning a consolidation of electric vehicle platforms following Nissan's recent tie-up with MMC, according to reports in Japan.

The combined platform would help efforts to utilise scale economies and lower the cost of EVs, the Nikkei news agency said.

The Nikkei said Renault and MMC will use the same vehicle platform as Nissan's next generation Leaf electric car expected to go on sale around 2018. The three companies would share key components such as the motor, inverter and battery, a move that would lower the Leaf's price by about a fifth, the Nikkei reported.

Carlos Ghosn has said that he expects Nissan and Renault to benefit from the new partnership between Nissan and MMC, "starting immediately with savings from joint purchasing".

He also said that other examples of benefits will include the ability to leverage Mitsubishi's know-how in Japan's popular kei car segment, to adopt Mitsubishi's systems for plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, to capitalise on its strength in pickup trucks, and to build on its successful operations in Southeast Asia.

 "We believe the synergies will return 10 percent of Nissan's investment in 2017 already and more than 20 percent the year after," he said. "As our partnership grows in the years to come, we will identify additional synergies at the regional level, as well as explore specific benefits for Renault and our other partners."

Carlos Ghosn was in Japan last week to formally add to his long list of titles, that of chairman of Mitsubishi Motors following the completion Nissan Motor's acquisition of a 34% controlling stake in the company in October for JPY237bn (US$2.3bn).