Renault Samsung
South Korea
Renault (France) - 80.1%
Samsung (Korea) - 19.9%
Location Headquarters and main plant: Busan
Design and R&D center: Kihueng (near Seoul)

Sales figures
2017: 99,846 units
2016: 111,097 units
2015: 80,028 units
2014: 82,123 units
2013: 67,174 units
2012: 65,691 units
2011: 118,135 units
2010: 155,697 units
2009: 136,467 units
2008: 104,484 units
2007: 119,824 units

Introduction Renault Samsung is the Korean subsidiary of Renault group. Even before its acquisition by Renault, it was already producing Nissan clones under license. Today, its SM3 / 5 / 7 are still badge-engineered versions of Nissan. However, with its newly established design and engineering center in Kihueng, it is working on next generation products by its own effort.
Brief History
Envying the success of Hyundai, Kia and Daewoo, Samsung group also expanded to automotive production in the mid-1990s. At first, a technical cooperation agreement was signed with Nissan, which saw the introduction of SM5 in 1998 based on Nissan Cefiro.

Unfortunately, that very same year came Asian financial crisis. Production stopped and the car division was up for sale. In 2000, Renault acquired majority shares of Samsung and renamed it to Renault Samsung Motors (or RMS). As the French company also owned Nissan, RMS continued relying on Nissan designs for its products - SM3 and SM5 were badge-engineered versions of Bluebird Sylphy and Teana respectively. 2007 arrived a fresh product, QM5 crossover, although it was designed by Renault and developed by Nissan.

QM5 (2007)

In 2008, RSM established its own R&D center and design studio at
Kihueng. This signalled the beginning of its own design and product development for the next generation vehicles. Its first in-house-designed concept car was shown at Seoul Motor Show in 2009. The second generation SM3 will also be engineered in-house.

Copyright© 1997-2018 by Mark Wan
Return to AutoZine home page