Renault is vowing to bounce back from a difficult couple of years in the UK market, targeting a resurgence to a 5 per cent market share rather than the lowly 2.5 per cent it currently manages.
“Our brand and activity has slightly declined, and not only because of the market but because of some performance issues, and we have to try and restore the efficiency of the system and try and catch a higher market share in this region,” said Jerome Stoll, Renault’s European sales and marketing and corporate sales boss.
“The brand has also been a little bit damaged for different reasons in the past and we have very strong arguments today to lift the brand in the eyes of the consumer. Design and quality have improved a lot.”
Renault’s fleet market share has plunged from 8.8 per cent in 2004 to 2 per cent for the first nine months of 2009, and Mr Stoll is looking for an upturn.
“We think there’s a reason to develop an aggressive plan in the UK to recover part of the market share we have lost,” he said. “The market share we lost was in fleet, not in retail.”
Much of the loss was in the firm’s decision to back out of the Motability channel, a sector Mr Stoll described as ‘difficult for all carmakers’.
But he’s not looking to just ‘throw’ cars at the low-profit channels to lift market share, although rental remains an option if it is profitable business.
Mr Stoll also defended Renault’s presence in the upper medium sector, despite the new Laguna’s poor performance. He said: “It is unfortunate to see the absence of success for Laguna. The new one is completely different, I think we did our job in terms of quality and product.”
He said the aim was for Renault UK to try and increase the car’s popularity.
Source: Business Car