French automaker Renault S.A. said an international network may have obtained data on Renault's electric car program, but it asserted that its vital technology secrets are safe. Renault also assured that production of the vehicles will not be delayed.
Three Renault executives, including a member of its management committee, were recently suspended over the leaking of data, prompting the government to warn of a widespread risk to French industry.
In an interview with Le Monde newspaper's weekend edition, Chief Operating Officer Patrick Pelata, said this is the work of professionals and the company is a victim of an organized international work.
The executives are suspected of leaking information on the high-profile electric vehicle program, a key segment of Renault's strategy in which it is investing billions of euros together with Japanese partner Nissan Motor Co.
Pelata said information may have been leaked regarding the economic model of the program and the costs, but not the "golden nuggets" of its technology, including about 200 patents that are being lodged.
He said that it's serious, but not as "bad as if it had been the technology." Pelata stated further that Renault’s launching of its four electric cars has not been set back by even one day. [via reuters]