Job cuts possible at Dunstable but Renault remains profitable
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• Renault Truck Industries (WEI) chairman HerveGuillaume says the company will make a trading profit this year, but has hinted that there are further job cuts to come at its Dunstable operation. In London for a dealer conference last weekend, he also confirmed that RTI's parent, RV1, would make a trading profit in 1988.
Guillaume's predictions come at the time when RT1 is claiming a 10.5% increase in commercial vehicle shipments for 1986 over 1985 — a total of 5,400 vehicles — and is making bullish noises about its new model line-up.
Following the launch of the French-origin, British-assembled, G260 and G290 tractors, RTI will launch a G260 6 x4 and G290 8x4 this year. Guillaume also says that a face lifted Commando ("an improvement, not a revolution," he says) will be launched in March.
A significant development for RTI is the sale of a small number (between 10 and 20) G260 tractors to the Post Office. Guillaume says the order, after four years' effort is a breakthrough, and reinforces the credibility of RTI's strategy of being British and building British trucks.
He emphasises that making and selling trucks is RTI's first priority, but is also optimistic about the l'SV market. Last year RTI sold some 400 midi buses based on the Dodge 50 Series, some 40% of sales in that sector. This year should be even better, he says, as the market moves towards 2325 seaters, where he sees RTI's strength. While RTI has not yet looked closely at bringing in larger buses, Guillaume says the company is currently considering attacking the British coach market.