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Nissan, Renault to Spend Big in India, as Geely Raises $750m

Nissan and Renault will invest $600m to turn Chennai into an export hub for new models, while Zeekr has now passed the current value of Xpeng, after raising $750m from existing investors

Nissan and Rault have announced a major rejig of their car alliance.
Nissan and Renault will invest $600m in production of six new models in Chennai. This shot shows Nissan's shows Leaf EV at the Beijing Auto Show in Sept 2020. File photo: Reuters.


Nissan Motor and Renault announced on Monday they will invest $600 million to make six new models in southern India.

The Japanese and French automakers will work on the projects from their base in Chennai (formerly Madras), turning it into an export hub, they said in a statement.

The six models, with each automaker making three, will be built on joint platforms and will also be exported, they said.

The new models will consist of two electric vehicles, the first EVs to be rolled out by the automakers in India, and four sports utility vehicles (SUVs).

The automakers last week unveiled details of their redesigned alliance and gave details of new joint projects in Latin America, India and Europe.


Nissan to Buy Stake in Renault EV Unit Amid Sweeping Redesign



Geely’s Zeekr tops Xpeng in value

In other EV news, Zeekr, the electric car brand of China’s Geely Automobile Holdings, is raising $750 million from five new and existing investors in a funding round that values the brand at $13 billion.

Zeekr, which sells two purely electric car models, said in a statement on Monday that proceeds from the funding round will be used to support technology research and the global expansion of the Zeekr brand.

The investors include Amnon Shashua, CEO and founder of autonomous driving technology company Mobileye Global – majority owned by Intel Corp – and the Guangzhou city municipal government’s investment arm Yuexiu Industrial Fund, both new investors in the company.

Supporters of the funding round also include Chinese battery maker CATL, already among Zeekr’s backers.

The new valuation makes Zeekr worth more on paper than Xpeng, which had a market value of $8.01 billion, according to the latest data from Refinitiv Eikon, CNBC said.

China’s biggest EV maker is BYD, whose market value was put at $109 billion, ahead of Li Auto ($25 billion), Nio ($17 billion), Geely ($15 billion) and Xpeng ($8 billion), it said.

Chinese automaker Geely’s premium electric vehicle brand Zeekr is yet to list publicly, but it confidentially filed for an initial public offering (IPO) in the US late last year, aiming to raise more than $1 billion.

The EV-maker lodged its filings with US regulators in December and is planning to go public in New York as early as the second quarter of 2023.

Geely was the fourth biggest EV maker in China last year, behind Tesla, which was third, according to China Passenger Car Association data.


  • Reuters with additional editing by Jim Pollard


NOTE: Further details were added to this report (about Geely and Zeekr) and the headline amended on February 13, 2023.




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Jim Pollard

Jim Pollard is an Australian journalist based in Thailand since 1999. He worked for News Ltd papers in Sydney, Perth, London and Melbourne before travelling through SE Asia in the late 90s. He was a senior editor at The Nation for 17+ years.


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