When it comes to French vehicles, Renault would always be on top of the league. Renault SA is the company that manufactures the famous French car line that also produces trucks, tractors, buses and vans. Through the years, the car brand has been associated with superior technology, security and revolutionary vehicle designs that make French people take pride of the company.
As a company, Renault started out in 1898 and was originally named Societe Renault Freres. The car manufacturer was founded by vehicle designer and engineer Louis Renault, together with his brothers Fernand and Marcel. Two friends of the brothers also invested and contributed to make the establishment of the company possible. They were Julian Wyer and Thomas Evert, who both were given equity stakes as shares in Renault.
Louis was the one responsible for the design and development of the Renault cars produced during their time. Fernan and Marcel on the other hand took care of the management aspect of the company, while Wyer and Evert infused capital to make the then start-up car making operation.
The initial and first ever Renault car model was called the Renault Voiturette 1CV, which was purchased by a family friend. The test ride for the car was conducted on December 1898. Apparently, the first ever Renault client was very much impressed and satisfied with the superios performance of the car. Renault Voiturette was able to climb streets and was very fast. On top of that, the body was economical and somehow efficient in all aspects.
Like many other car manufacturers, Renault also struggled during the war era. However, the company suffered a major blow and Louis was turned into a sacrificial lamb. In 1944, Louis was murdered while inside a French prison cell. He was jailed for allowing his factories to work for Nazi Germany during the war. After Louis' death, the French government moved to sequester the whole of Renault. The company was restructured to be a government owned firm, and the name was changed into Regie Nationale des Usiness Renault.
As a public entity, Renault has undergone resurgence. In 1946, the car model became popular again with the introduction of the 4CV rear engine model. The development somehow strengthened Renault as a car brand. The name improved its status to become a staunch competitor to the then top cars Volkswagen Beetle and Morris Minor.
Renault became productive under the control of Paris. Before the firm was again privatised in 1996, Renault has developed and launched 26 other car models that represented how Renault as a car firm could be truly reliable and effective. After the company became private, it resumed exporting vehicles to South America and Eastern Europe. Facilities in Turkey and in Argentina were also upgraded using the fund generated from the capital raising.
Currently, Renault is productively cooperating with Japan's Nissan Motors to form the Renault-Nissan Alliance. Through a cross-shareholding arrangement, Renault is able to control 44.4% of the Japanese partner, while Nissan is able to own a 15% interest in Renault. The result is a more productive and output-oriented firm that never fails to come out with car products that aim to please the market. Renault has truly come a long way.
Original Authors: Manny
Edit Update Authors: M.A.Harris
Updated On: 11/06/2008