Renault takes Better Place bankruptcy in stride, says EVs are still a focus

Renault says the
recent bankruptcy filing by battery-swapping technology firm
Better Place will do little to dissuade the automaker (and sister company
Nissan) from continuing to try and boost electric-vehicle sales worldwide.

Better Place’s decision «does not at all call into question the
electric vehicle strategy of the Renault-Nissan Alliance,» Renault said in a statement. «The Alliance is the world leader in terms of electric vehicles, and the volumes of Renault’s EVs continue to progress month after month.» Renault also said its
dealers in Denmark and Israel will continue servicing the Fluence Z.E. EVs that had been used for the battery-swapping trial.

Better Place, which was founded by Shai Agassi in 2007, filed for bankruptcy in an Israeli court over the weekend, saying that it had too little cash to continue operations. The company was estimated to have lost more than $400 million by the time
Agassi resigned from the company last October and, after that,
discontinued California and Australia operations to focus on Denmark and Israel.

Earlier this month, Renault-Nissan chief Carlos Ghosn said
the Fluence Z.E. would be the company’s only battery-swappable model because of lack of demand. Read Renault’s brief statement
below.

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Renault’s reaction to Better Place’s announcement

May 27, 2013

Renault acknowledges the decision of Better Place’s Board of Directors.

The Renault network in Israel and in Denmark will continue to provide after-sales servicing for Fluence Z.E. and these vehicles’
batteries.

Electric vehicles are a revolution in mobility. Renault is exploring all the charging technologies from quick drop to several alternatives.

This decision does not at all call into question the electric vehicle strategy of the Renault-Nissan Alliance. The Alliance is the world leader in terms of electric vehicles, and the volumes of Renault’s EVs continue to progress month after month.

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