As far as I can remember Nissan and Renault signed a partnership in 1999. Renault bought around 40% of Nissan's shares. One of their guys (Carlos Ghosn, very tough, known for cost cutting) runs the show now in Japan.
On a brighter note: Ghosn drove all of Nissan's cars after he arrived and liked the Skyline very much. He was aware of the icon-status of the car.
Look at it this way: if Renault wanted to make drastic changes at Nissan, they would have done so already. There would not be an R35 Skyline on the horizon.
Carlos Gohsn has saved Nissan! He set out a 5 year plan to get Nissan back to profit levels, cut costs and implement some coherent manufacturing strategies. He acheived all of this in 3 years I believe! If it wasn't for him Nissan would be in very deep trouble, with very large debts, still making too many models, and God only knows what would have happened to the GTR project!
There was a bit af a roumour going around a while back that Nissan were going to buy back not only the renault share of their business but a significant portion of Renault itself, due to some changes in the way the French govornment subsidises the car industry in France... (big cuts to Renault)
apparently the partnership isn't very nice on a workers level as the Nissan training Centre in Watford has now got a lot of reault courses on and the two groups don't mix at all.. the classes are split from each other at all times and even the instructors are constantly having a go about the french crap they work on..
All roumours and unconfirmed, but heard with my ears nonetheless.....
I have a fellow GTIR mate from Uni who works at NTC-Europe and he told me that for the major europeon projects they are being encouraged to cross brand components and features from Renault, but they do not as far as i'm aware do any development on the 'special vehicles' such as 350Z, Next Skyline, etc....
...Also, for some time now they have had the full size prototype model of the R35 in the Technical Centre reception...
I got that a tiny bit wrong, just received this.... Fyi..
"We share platforms, that is where it ends!
Japan start the development, then any cars which are to be sold in europe are re-developed by us!
certain future projects will see us developing a car from scratch!
we will develop the 350z for europe, r 35 unknown!"