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Dacia and Renault
Inside the factory women are noticeable fitting parts together on a rather long assembly line, till you reach the end, where you see brand new cars; from Dacia, Logan and Sandero to Duster cars running the gamut.
What makes it quite a fascinating experience is that there are almost no robots in the Pitesti plant but over 10,000 employees going about their jobs with quiet efficiency. More than 30% of them are women, not only with tasks on the ‘assembly floor’, but working at every conceivable level in the organization.
Dacia, the first Romanian car manufacturer, was established in 1966. In 1999, Renault of France purchased 51% of the company’s shares, when state-owned companies were privatized by the government. Currently, Renault owns 99.45% of Dacia stocks and is the second employer in Romania.
Specializing in robust, economical models, Dacia currently design vehicles primarily for new markets. Romania is now a key component in the Renault Group’s strategy for international expansion. After modernizing Dacia’s historic plant in Pitesti, Renault set up two centers which are completely independent entities; a design centre and an engineering centre. The Dacia Duster, launched in 2010, is the first vehicle produced jointly by these centres.
Pitesti (120km from Bucharest) is the main production site for the Logan model; Renault is enjoying huge international success with the Logan, the flagship of Dacia, which it supplies to 47 countries. Logan is available in all European markets, as well as Turkey, Algeria, Ukraine and the Middle East. The plant also makes parts and powertrain components.
The Pitesti plant has ISO 14001 certification and also holds the SMR (Renault Management System) label. The site has been extended to boost production capacity up to 400,000 vehicles annually.
In line with its expansion plan, Renault also established a production facility in Tangiers, Morocco, where 400,000 vehicles are to be produced. The shift to North Africa has been well planned. Renault concluded a joint venture agreement at the end of January 2013 to build a factory near the west Algerian town of Oran, where 75,000 vehicles will be produced annually for the European market starting in 2014.
Dacia, an international brand
Dacia’s objective is to manufacture a robust, reliable and accessible car, which meets Renault’s high quality standards. Dacia is the second brand of the Renault Group, contributing significantly to the improvement of Romania’s image worldwide. The Logan project was a national Romanian challenge, but Dacia proved that it had the potential of an international brand. Recognition came with the launch of the Sandero and Duster models, which became instant hits. Dacia’s sales increased from 52,500 units in 2000 to nearly 350,000 in 2010. France and Germany are the two main export destinations with 110,000 and 40,500 cars, respectively, exported there annually, followed by Italy, Spain and Turkey.
Dacia; a key player in the Romanian economy
Dacia represents 2.9% of Romania’s GDP. 90% of the cars produced are exported. The plant also manufactures parts for other Renault plants which assemble Dacia cars.
The mechanical and chassis plant manufactures engines, gearboxes, transfer modules, front and rear axles and powertrain frames. These products are delivered to the Dacia assembly plant and to other factories within the Renault-Nissan Alliance.
The logistics division is in charge of the transportation of cars and parts to Russia, Morocco, Columbia, India, Iran, Brazil and South Africa, where they are assembled.
Renault industrial manufacturing
Renault invested over €1.5 billion in the different plants it set up in Romania since its acquisition. These investments were made to enlarge and modernize the industrial production system, and improvement in the industrial performance of the Dacia site was possible only after the introduction of the Renault Manufacturing System (SPR). The system, based on the standardisation of work benches, methods and operations, essentially contributed to the increase of productivity of the Dacia plant in terms of improved quality and working conditions, which has made it quite famous in the car industry worldwide.
Romania Technical Center in Titu
The Romania Technical Center (RTR) in Titu is run by a Romanian woman Anica Muntean. The center again boasts quite a high number of women employees.
Part of Renault Technologie Roumanie, Titu Technical Centre carries out tests for vehicles and mechanical parts developed in the Renault design offices from Bucharest or abroad.
Inaugurated on September 15, 2010, Titu Technical Centre is the only automotive testing centre in Eastern Europe and the complement of Aubevoye and Lardy centres in France.
Located on a 350 ha area and with over 400 employees at the beginning of 2012, Titu Technical Centre provides the newest technologies and the necessary means in testing field throughout various development stages of projects.
The Center includes dozens of testing areas and the 32 km of track. The center, part of Renault Technologie Roumanie, helps test and validate vehicles in the Entry range for the Renault Group.
Penetration of the African Market
Renault is looking to aggressively penetrate the African market by introducing three iconic models of its brand, which it envisages will win over new customers on the continent.
Its new Renault Logan, Sandero and Sandero Stepway, have inherited the same fundamental strengths that have already made the brand so popular both in Europe and in Africa, with their high quality, reliability and robustness, with adaptable suspensions which meet the requirements of local markets, as well as generous cabin space and carrying capacity.
These new vehicles will go on sale in Africa starting April 2013.
Dacia’s mission on safety, quality and environment
Health and safety for all employees, risk prevention and improvement of ergonomics are priorities for Dacia. Dacia’s health and safety policy is in line with the policies of the Renault Group.
The policy on Quality is generated by Renault’s positioning as the most cost-effective car maker in Europe. The main objective is to satisfy its clients via irreproachable product and service quality. Dacia’s impact on the environment is similar to that of other Renault plants in Western Europe. During the last ten years, Dacia invested € 22 million for environmental protection.