Renault SA's growing litany of woes could nudge the French carmaker to reduce its stake in Nissan Motor Co., a step that would help ease their strained relations.

The possibility of a shareholding deal with the Japanese company was driven home by analysts after a tumultuous week for Renault. A profit warning and subsequent drubbing of the share price Friday followed on the heels of a top management shake-up, laying bare how ill-prepared the French carmaker may be for a downturn in the sector.

"Renault may need to consider selling assets including Nissan shares to defend its balance sheet," Jefferies analyst Philippe Houchois wrote in a note, pointing to a possible dividend cut and concerns about weak cash flow.