French
car maker Renault is planning to drop its name from its cars, according to a report
in the British Guardian newspaper.

The paper says that Renault thinks its silver diamond logo, first used in 1925,
is now so well known that name badges are no longer needed. The Guardian also
says that the logo-only policy will help when the company starts to sell some
re-styled Nissan vehicles under the Renault badge.

Renault owns 37% of Nissan and is rationalising its operations in many countries
by sharing ‘back office’ functions such as parts and service back-up
and dealership personnel training.

Though it will sell both brands in some countries such as Mexico, it wants
to concentrate on either the Renault or Nissan name in markets where one or
the other is particularly strong and will build certain models on jointly developed
platforms.

The company confirmed today that it is to build the new Nissan Micra in Britain
and this will share its platform with the next Renault Clio and Twingo.

A Renault spokesman told the Guardian that the company was planning a marketing
campaign to improve the image of the marque rather than individual models.

This is already evident in the UK where the local arm has been running a series
of television advertisements featuring the new Avantine two-door GT coupe with
the company’s latest ‘Createur d’Automobiles’ slogan.

The Avantine, due out in October, will be the first Renault to carry just the
logo on the back and front of the vehicle.

The Guardian says that the decision to drop the Renault name was hailed in
some quarters as a marketing master-stroke and others as an overconfident assumption
that the logo is widely known around the world.

The logo only route has been used successfully by firms such as luggage maker
Louis Vitton and clothes makers NIKE and Ralph Lauren, the paper said.