Renault-Nissan Alliance chief Carlos Ghosn (above) is expected to become the new chairman of Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC), says Japan’s Nikkei news agency.
The likely appointment follows Nissan’s 34 per cent stake in MMC, announced back in May and due to be ratified next week. Mitsubishi would then effectively become part of the Nissan group.
Nissan spent US$2.2 billion on what was a rescue package of sorts after its Japanese rival admitted it inflated fuel economy data on domestic models.
MMC has lately revised its forecast for a larger financial loss this year because of the scandal and the subsequent slump in sales of its vehicles.
Nissan has reportedly asked MMC chairman and president Osamu Masuko to stay on. Ghosn, aged 62, has a reputation for cost-cutting.
The Nikkei agency reported that Ghosn will be directly involved in running MMC, working to change the company’s culture and explore alliance synergies.
Ghosn has said Nissan’s stake would help MMC address the challenges it faces, particularly in restoring consumers’ trust in the fuel economy of MMC vehicles.
He said of the agreement: “This is a breakthrough transaction and a win-win for both Nissan and Mitsubishi Motors. It creates a dynamic new force in the automotive industry that will cooperate intensively, and generate sizeable synergies.
“We will be the largest shareholder of MMC, respecting their brand, their history and boosting their growth prospects. We welcome them as the newest member of our enlarged Alliance family.”
Nissan is Japan’s second-largest carmaker and partner in an alliance with France’s Renault. It also has strong ties with Daimler in Germany, Avtovaz in Russia, and Dongfeng in China.