Renault boasts record year, despite diesel allegations


BOULOGNE-BILLANCOURT, France: French carmaker Renault said Friday it booked a record year in 2016 and said it would not set aside any provisions for potential financial fallout from a diesel emissions probe.

Renault, which has now become France’s biggest carmaker in terms of sales, said in a statement that profits leapt almost 20 percent in 2016, driven by strong sales.

Net profit jumped by 19.7 percent to 3.54 billion euros ($3.77 billion) last year on a 13.1-percent increase in revenues to 51.2 billion euros, the statement said.

The company attributed the strong performance to a 13.3-percent increase in registrations of the group’s Renault, Dacia and Samsung Motors brands to 3.18 million vehicles worldwide.

“In 2016, Renault reached a new sales record and became the number one French automotive group worldwide. Volume and market shares were up in all regions,” the statement said.

Financial director, Clotilde Delbos, described 2016 as “a very good year” in which the group reached all of its strategic targets.

“These objectives, in particular that of exceeding 50 billion euros in sales, have been achieved by 2016,” she told a news conference.

“We have achieved these very good results despite the fact that a number of the countries that count a lot for us and which were strong in the past . . . are still at lower levels than in the past,” she added, citing Brazil, Russia and Iran.

In January, Paris prosecutors announced they were probing Renault over possible cheating on diesel emissions.

While German giant Volkswagen is still counting the cost of an unprecedented emissions scandal, known as “dieselgate” that shook German industry to the core, similar allegations are now being levied against other carmakers, notably Italian-American giant Fiat Chrysler and France’s Renault.


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