The UK has traditionally been an important market for French automobile giant Renault, but performance has been enormously mercurial for most of the past decade, with large swings in sales from year to year. Between 2002 and 2012, for example, local volumes plunged from almost 200,000 passenger cars to under 41,000 units after French HQ ordered that all models in all global markets were required to be profitable. Multiple low-margin models including the Espace, Laguna and Modus were dropped, prompting knock-on cuts to Renault's dealership network, which was reduced by a third. The fall in volumes, set against an increase in the UK market as a whole, was the worst performance by any major manufacturer. As a result, however, the UK group managed to return to profit in 2013 for the first time since 2007. Unit sales recovered after that, with passenger cars rebounding by 2016 to a five-year high of over 85,000 passenger cars, before declining again. The figure for 2019 was 59,122. Best-sellers were the Captur and Clio. The group also sold around 18,000 LCVs. Since 2011, the group has also marketed sister brand Dacia in the UK. The decline in Renault sales has been offset by soaring volumes of the secondary brand, whose sales jumped 28% in 2019 - more than any other car brand - to 31k units. Vincent Tourette is CEO Renault UK & North Europe. Turnover for 2017 was £1.38bn, with profit of £12.2m. The Renault brand has been imported into the UK since 1902, and even set up a local manufacturing facility in the 1950s. Since 1961, though, all cars have been imported. See also the full Adbrands profile for Renault.
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Capsule checked 7th January 2020
Adbrands Daily Update 9th Nov 2019: "30 Years in the Making: The French Exchange". If we're honest, Renault's UK-specific advertising has for at least a decade tended towards the purely functional. There's not been much that's been worth a second look since those great Va Va Voom ads from the early 2000s with Thierry Henry, and before them the long-running Nicole and Papa series in the 1990s. How things change. This gorgeous film from newly combined Publicis.Poke is like a bolt from the blue, demonstrating that Renault UK and its long-serving agency seem themselves to have rediscovered, well, let's say a different sort of Va Va Voom. We won't give away the unexpected twist that comes halfway, but the end result is a wonderfully warm and emotionally satisifying tale. Needless to say it has very little to do with the specific product it's advertising - the revamped Clio - other than to reflect the combination of French spirit and English reserve, and how well they seem to go together.
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