A few days ago, we knew the first low-cost electric car’s details from Renault: Dacia Spring. An urban with the soul of an SUV that will hit the market in 2021. Or at least that’s the intention. Now the French group has met with a frontal rejection of the unions to manufacturing in China and selling in Europe that some European brands are following.
The representatives of the main unions have shown their rejection that a group being helped by the French government with a loan of 500 million euros will produce some of its new models outside its borders, something that has put the Dacia Spring in the spotlight.
And it is that the confirmation of its production in Asia has arrived coinciding with the presentation of a plan to adjust its workforce at a global level that will mean the dismissal of some 15,000 workers.
According to Frank Daoust, spokesman for the influential CFDT union: “We are totally opposed to making the Dacia Spring in China. This is not in line with the government’s support for the automobile industry and employment in France.”
For its part, the FO union, which also represents Renault workers, asked the company not to deviate from its goal of turning France into a global center of excellence for electric cars while arguing that the footprint Spring’s carbon system will be disastrous due to the emissions involved in transporting the vehicle from China to Europe.
A decision that the union has described in a statement as “inconceivable and irresponsible to do them anywhere other than France.”
This tells us that it will not be easy for Renault to opt for the “Made in China” strategy for Spring. Mainly at a time of sharp drops in sales and income and the need for support from the public sector that forces them to make protectionist decisions with employment.
Let’s not forget that the recently introduced electric Megane, which will arrive in 2021, will be manufactured at Renault’s French plant in Douai, while the ZOE will continue to do so in Flins. A trend that seems to break except surprise the Dacia Spring, which will arrive in the latter part of 2021 from China despite the unions’ rejection and the emissions footprint that will bring it from the other side of the planet.