How PSA is consolidating the ambitions of the car sector in Bretagne

The Chairman and Managing Director of the PSA group, C. Tavares, confirmed last June the allocation in 2018 of a new SUV to PSA – La Janais, near Rennes. Production of this vehicle had initially been planned for China. The factory will benefit from €100M investment for its modernisation.

In 2015, the La Janais site had already been allocated the production of the P87, with parts’ manufacture allocated to suppliers established in Ille-et-Vilaine: Plastic Omnium for bumpers and rear sections and Faurecia for the seats, dashboards, door panels and soundproofing mats. These productions give La Janais ten years of manufacturing visibility.

In addition, Rennes Métropole is working on redeveloping part of the La Janais site for industrial purposes (the authorities had purchased this in 2015) in order to consolidate the car manufacturing area in Rennes. For Ille-et-Vilaine is still a stronghold for the sector in Bretagne, with major groups like Sanden, world no. 2 in car air-conditioning, Delphi (on-board electronics) and Cooper Standard, which announced at end 2015 investments of €12.5M in Rennes and €14M in Vitré, and also start-ups like Yokogo (communication solutions for smart vehicles).

Over and beyond the Rennes urban area, the whole of Bretagne intends to remain “a competitive car region in Europe”. The sector employs nearly 20,000 people in over 250 establishments spread throughout the region, in companies like Autocruise in Brest (subsidiary of TRW Automotive, a specialist in speed radars and controllers), Centigon at Lamballe (armoured vehicles) and Blue Solutions at Quimper (Bolloré, electricity storage activities). Bretagne is banking on innovation and sector growth to create the car factory of the future.

Along with its fabric of companies, it is relying on the industrial platform Excelcar which mobilises the research laboratories and radiates over nearly fifty SME. It is working especially on the bodywork of the future, by drawing on advances in the nautical sector and using lightweight and less energy-hungry composite materials.

The region is also seeking to become a reference in the new mobility solutions, mainly with Blue Solutions (Bolloré group), and in smart vehicles, with its Cyber centre of excellence, whose members are Thalès, DCNS and now PSA, which is thus showing its wish to contribute to the theme of mobility, the smart car and data pirating.

 

Source/Credit: La Tribune – 16/07/2016