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Former Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn is back in the news again after his escape from Japan while awaiting trial for alleged financial crimes.
He's got a new book out, where he discusses his time heading up the Japanese car manufacturing company. And some of what he has to say about the company isn't exactly pretty.
Former Nissan chairman's book is an auto industry tell-all
Ghosn's new book is called Broken Alliances. In it, he reminisces about his time leading one of the top car manufacturers in the world. And he didn't just head up Nissan. Ghosn is known for having developed alliances with other auto manufacturers and serving in lead roles for them as well, as reported by The Drive.
Especially noteworthy is Ghosn's establishment of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance. During that collaboration's existence, he served as chairman for all three brands, as well as CEO for Renault and Nissan. In his book, he tells of how the Japanese government and some other executives in the industry didn't take too kindly to the arrangement.
This isn't to say that it’s uncommon for Japanese automakers to make alliances. It's just that Ghosn had a reputation for doing things a certain way, which didn't always sit well with others.
Ghosn made some interesting comments about Nissan
The most memorable aspects of Ghosn's tell-all, however, have to do with the comments that he made about Nissan itself.
Ghosn recently appeared on Fox Business to tout his book. While on the program, he called Nissan a "boring and mediocre car company" that will be challenged to "find its place in the car industry" if it fails to develop partnerships that will lead to technological innovation.
This portrait of the company contrasts considerably with the one that emerged over a decade ago, when Nissan was ahead of its time in developing anti-drunk driving technology, for example. According to Ghosn, it would seem that things have changed considerably since then.
This isn't the first time that Ghosn has made waves
Ghosn is no stranger to controversy. He was detained in November 2018 for a number of financial crimes that he had allegedly committed as CEO of Nissan. These included underreporting his compensation and falsifying securities reports.
Then in 2019, his daring escape from Japan amid his trial for those crimes made news all over the globe. Ghosn's escape was especially shocking for its pure brazenness.
First, he was smuggled out of his home in a large musical equipment box, complete with air holes so that he could breathe. Then he was flown to his native Lebanon, where he has remained ever since; Lebanon doesn’t have an extradition treaty with Japan.
Since his arrival in Lebanon, Ghosn has continued to maintain his innocence. As he put it in his interview with Fox Business, "This is the kind of plot organized by people where at the end of the day you discover there is no winner. Japan lost its reputation. The French lost. Nissan lost, Renault lost, Mitsubishi lost, the shareholders lost."
The new Nissan Z is still drawing a lot of positive attention despite Ghosn’s claims. If you’re in the market for a new car, you can shop around for car insurance to save money. Comparison-shopping can be a hassle, but Jerry's here to help. Jerry is a free app that will gather quotes from 50 providers for you in seconds.
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