Automakers see new fields of research as ripe for further collaboration

The Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance and Daimler, parent of Mercedes-Benz and Smart, may expand the scope of their collaboration to include electric drivetrain and self-driving car technology development.

“The industry being in transformation in the area of connectivity, autonomous cars and connected services, there are plenty of areas of cooperation for our entities,” Carlos Ghosn, CEO of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance, told Reuters and other outlets at a press conference at the 2018 Paris motor show.

According to Dieter Zetsche, CEO of Daimler, the two organisations could go their own way with battery research and pool their findings. Car makers are especially keen to improve energy density and reduce the use of expensive rare-earth metals in their batteries.

Ghosn added demand for electric cars is increasing, but the industry’s ability to meet demand is limited by battery and electric motor supply constraints.

Daimler and the French-Japanese alliance have been actively working together since 2010.

Fruits from their combined efforts include the Mercedes-Benz X-Class, which is based on the Nissan Navara, and the Infiniti Q30/QX30, which uses the previous-generation A-Class platform.