* May take 3-5 years to return to pre-crisis levels - COO
* Renault may disappear in current form if France not
competitive - CEO
(Recasts with CEO comments to France 24 and RTL)
PARIS, Sept 28 Renault's chief
executive warned on Friday that the French carmaker could
disappear "in its current form" if it is unable to be
competitive at home as European car markets face a lasting
Renault would also not be able to avoid cutting jobs in
France if the market's decline proves to be deep and lasting,
Carlos Ghosn said in an interview with France 24 television
during the Paris auto show.
Asked in a separate interview with RTL radio if Renault
could disappear, Ghosn said: "In its current form, yes.
"Each company is tied to its home country. I do not know of
any company that can be viable, that can prosper from a base
that is not competitive. A company needs a natural base,
Renault's natural base is France."
Automakers in Europe are struggling to cope with a glut of
excess capacity amid a sustained market decline. Renault has
forecast a 13 percent drop in the car market in France and an 8
percent decline in Europe this year.
French arch-competitor PSA Peugeot Citroen has
said it plans to cut more than 10,000 jobs, close one assembly
plant and shrink another. Ghosn told France 24 that Renault had
no plans at this stage to cut jobs in France.
Renault intends to ask unions for a new nationwide deal on
pay and conditions to avert mass layoffs, Chief Operating
Officer Carlos Tavares told Reuters at the auto show on
Tavares told BFM radio on Friday that European car markets
may take three to five years to return to pre-crisis levels.
"We are not certain to have touched bottom yet," Tavares
said. "We are now stuck in a situation that could last."
(Reporting by Dominique Vidalon; Editing by James Regan)