Long-term collaborators Nissan and Mitsubishi have announced plans to invest in Renault’s Ampere electric car unit. Among other things, the cooperation aims to produce electric vehicles specifically designed for the European market.
Nissan and Mitsubishi plan to invest up to €600 million and €200 million in Ampere, respectively. This specialist EV unit has been separated from Renault and will be listed publicly soon. Nissan will become “a strategic investor” in Ampere and may use the EV unit’s software and connection advances in markets other than Europe.
The most significant effect of this relationship is quite likely the creation by Ampere of an electric version of the tiny Nissan Micra for the European market. In addition, a medium-sized electric SUV for Mitsubishi is in the works. Renault CEO Luca de Meo stated that Ampere’s collaboration would considerably lower Micra production costs, maybe by up to 50%.
However, the alliance partners have confirmed cooperation initiatives in Latin America and India, in addition to the European market. The desire to focus on individual projects and respond to regional differences more efficiently drove their decision to cancel their single purchase arrangement in September.
Mitsubishi can now adopt electrification while keeping development costs low. The EVs bought from Ampere will be marketed in the company’s major markets of Southeast Asia and Europe.
Renault has big plans for Ampere, including a spin-off of its electric vehicle division and an IPO in 2024. The French automaker intends to keep more than half of Ampere’s stock. With the addition of Nissan and Mitsubishi, this three-way partnership intends to address the growing demand for EVs as well as the growing relevance of software-intensive vehicles.
Qualcomm, a US chipmaker, has also expressed interest in investing in the EV venture, highlighting the company’s global relevance.