Renault CEO: Tesla price cuts a “warning” to the auto sector

Tesla’s recent wave of price cuts could be seen as a “warning” of sorts for rival electric vehicle manufacturers. This is, at least, according to Renault CEO Fabrice Cambolive. 

Renault’s sales rose by 9% in the first quarter of the year, suggesting that the company’s efforts to restructure and focus on its most profitable models might be working. But while Renault’s current strategy may be paying off after four years of declining revenues, Tesla’s price cuts are still pushing the automaker to closely examine its pricing strategies globally.

In a comment to reporters on Monday, Cambolive shared Renault’s stance on its pricing. “We will analyze country by country, market by market, which level of competitiveness we need to have to stay in the match,” the Renault CEO said, as noted in a Reuters report.

The electric Megane, one of Renault’s most popular models, saw a sharp rise in sales in March. It should be noted that the Megane electric now costs as much as the Tesla Model 3, a best-selling all-electric vehicle. Tesla has been putting on a lot of pressure as well.

Following Tesla’s price cut last week, for example, the Model 3 now starts at 41,990 euros in France. In comparison, the Megane electric costs 42,000 euros.

“It’s clear that Tesla cutting prices is a challenge, starting with the cost side of things. It’s a warning that we are looking at,” Cambolive said.

Renault’s global sales for the first three months reached 354,545 units, which is about 16% less than Tesla’s 422,875 units. Renault is expected to release sales data for the group, which also includes Dacia and Alpine cars, on Thursday.

The Renault group posted a 5.9% decline in sales in 2022, thanks in no small part to the loss of the Russian market. Sales for the Renault brand, representing two-thirds of the group’s sales, fell by 9.4% last year as well.

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