Renault has confirmed receipt of a proposal from Fiat Chrysler Automobiles regarding a potential 50/50 merger transaction, saying it will “study” the opportunity “with interest”.

In a statement, Renault said its board of directors had met to examine the proposal.

“After careful review of the terms of FCA’s friendly proposal, the board of directors decided to study with interest the opportunity of such a business combination, comforting Groupe Renault’s manufacturing footprint and creating additional value for the [Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi] Alliance,” the French automaker said.

“A further communication will be issued in due course to inform the market of the results of these discussions, in accordance with applicable laws and regulations,” the statement added.

Earlier, FCA said it had delivered a “non-binding letter” to the board of Groupe Renault proposing a combination of their respective businesses as a 50/50 merger.

The proposed combination, FCA said, would create a global automaker “pre-eminent in terms of revenue, volumes, profitability and technology”. The firm said the combined business would sell approximately 8,7 million vehicles annually as well as be a world leader in electric vehicle technologies, premium brands, SUVs, pickup trucks and light commercial vehicles.

FCA’s portfolio includes Abarth, Alfa Romeo, Chrysler, Dodge, Fiat, Jeep, Lancia, Maserati and Ram Trucks, with Ferrari having been spun off from the group in 2016.