The oil company’s deal with Geely and Renault is still subject to approval by the automaker’s board, one of the people said.
One of the sources said the three companies are working to finalize the agreement in the coming weeks.
When Geely and Renault announced the new venture last year, they said they would employ 19,000 people at 17 powertrain plants and three research and development sites.
Renault plans to focus on electric vehicles as part of an effort by the French automaker to revamp its partnership with Nissan by splitting off its internal combustion engine business.
As part of that, Renault is trying to persuade Nissan to invest in its new EV division.
For Geely, the Renault deal expands its pattern of partnership building and extends it beyond China.
The strategic focus of the joint venture is likely to be on advanced four-cylinder engines, two of the sources said.
One way to use these engines is to use them as dedicated generators to provide charge to the hybrid vehicle’s battery system, rather than directly powering the vehicle when the battery charge is low. am.
In such an arrangement, the gasoline engine could be designed to operate in a “very efficient mode,” one of the sources said.
Geely has a previously announced hybrid gasoline engine development deal with Mercedes-Benz and holds a stake in the German automaker.
Geely and Renault’s new JV aren’t the only companies investing in the view that fuel-efficient hybrids will remain part of the mix as more automakers roll out EVs.
Toyota president Akio Toyoda defended the company’s continued investment in hybrid vehicles such as the Prius, saying EVs remain expensive and charging infrastructure is incomplete.