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Carlos Ghosn expects that by the time he retires, the Renault-Nissan Alliance will be among the top three automakers in the world. So Toyota, Volkswagen and GM had better watch out.

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Says EVs 'Remain The Most Practical And Affordable Zero-Emission Option'

That's a nice little dig at hydrogen fuel cell technology, Mr. Ghosn. The Nissan chief, long a champion and heavy-duty investor of electric-vehicle technology, wrote an essay on his LinkedIn Influencer page on why EVs are the theoretical wave of the future. It's obviously not an unbiased opinion, but he makes his points clearly.

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Aston Martin has a very interesting future ahead of it. While the British brand appeared to be struggling with aging tech for a while, fresh investment from Daimler may have shown a light toward the future with the brand getting engines and electronics from them. Also, former Renault-Nissan top exec Andy Palmer has jumped ship from the French/Japanese automaker to become CEO of the much smaller sports car company. Interestingly, though, new reports from unnamed Nissan sources have indicated that

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Aston Martin has been without a helmsman since Ulrich Bez stepped down from the chief executive office at the end of last year to serve as non-executive chairman in a semi-retired ambassadorial capacity. The British automaker, now on the cusp of a new era, has been running without a CEO since, but has now named Bez's replacement in Andy Palmer.

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It's official, folks: After initial reports last week indicated that Mercedes-Benz was preparing to begin assembly at the Nissan plant in Aguascalientes, Mexico, the two parent companies have announced just that. Only instead of using the existing Nissan plant at the site (in operation since 1992), Daimler and the Renault-Nissan Alliance have announced a joint venture to build a new one alongside it.

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If the automotive industry's current era could be summarized by one trend – from a corporate aspect, anyway – surely it would be conglomeration. But of all the major auto groups that have emerged over the past several years, none have kept themselves at arm's length quite like the Renault-Nissan Alliance.

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Don't blame us, blame the infrastructure. That's what Renault-Nissan Alliance chief Carlos Ghosn essentially said when he explained why his two companies will miss their 2016 goal of having cumulatively sold 1.5 million electric vehicles, the Detroit Bureau reports, citing an interview Ghosn conducted with the Financial Times. Ghosn says that the lack of vehicle-recharging infrastructure pushed out by the US, European and Chinese governments has been more of a factor in the sales situation than

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Mitsubishi and Renault-Nissan have just inked an alliance that might, hopefully, reverse the ailing fortunes of the Mitsubishi brand in the US market. The big chunk of news is that Mitsubishi will produce two Renualt-based models for sale in the US market, and that they'll be built at the Renault-Samsung factory in Busan, South Korea.

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Renault believes there's enough Alpine love to restart that brand with its own model almost immediately. The launch of the Initiale Paris luxury brand it's been mulling, on the other hand, will be more restrained: a report in Autocar says that instead of launching with a first model based on the Mercedes E-Class architecture, Renault is going to introduce an Initiale Paris trim line on the new Clio and Espace. More accurately, that should be 're-introduce and aggressively market,' since Renault

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The Renault Initiale Paris concept car from 1995 (pictured) became the company's Vel Satis flagship model that sold from 2002 to 2009 – although the Vel Satis did without the concept's detuned Formula One engine, a 392-horsepower, 3.5-liter Renault Sport RS6 V10, which might be why it never sold as well as desired. Renault has held on to the Initiale Paris name, though, using to denote the top trim on cars like the Laguna, Espace, Clio and even the dinky Modus supermini.

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Nissan reached an agreement to make four-cylinder engines at its Tennessee plant for Mercedes-Benz, marking a continuation of a collaboration launched in 2010 between Mercedes-Benz parent Daimler AG and the Renault-Nissan Alliance.

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The door metaphorically adjoining the offices of Msr. Ghosn and Dr. Zetsche swings both ways. The two executives – heads of Daimler and the Renault-Nissan Alliance respectively – signed a deal that would see the two auto groups collaborating on future products. So far all the reports appear to be benefiting Nissan – including the latest on AMG engines in Infiniti Performance Line models – but the latest indicate a measure of reciprocation.

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Renault Kangoo Z.E. - Click above for high-res image gallery

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2012 Renault Fluence Z.E. – Click above for high-res image gallery

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Nissan Leaf – Click above for high-res image gallery

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Renault-Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn and Daimler AG chairman Dieter Zetsche sign the agreement

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Renault-Nissan Alliance EV in Lombardy – Click above for high-res image

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2010 Nissan Leaf EV – Click above for hi-res image gallery

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