Nissan’s Infiniti luxury brand has started to focus more on a global presence.
Nissan launched its Infiniti brand in the US in 1989, but now with a new global headquarters in Hong Kong and led by Johan de Nysschen, a former Audi bigwig, the automaker plans to develop a “de-Americanized” lineup of vehicles.
Initially it will develop smaller vehicles and smaller-displacement engines which will make the Infiniti brand more attractive to customers in the Asian and European markets, two regions which begin to focus more on smaller powerplants and smaller vehicles. Until now, Infiniti has focused on vehicles which would suit the American taste, as the automaker does not offer a single diesel and its smallest engine is a 3.7-liter V6 offering 330 horsepower.
The first step in expanding its global presence will be part of the Daimler-Nissan engine partnership which will introduce a four-cylinder diesel in the 2014 Q50. The Q30 production model will also play an important role in this project, besides the idea of a QX30 based on the Nissan Qashqai. Infiniti also plans to introduce its first full-electric model sometime in 2015.
This move does not mean that Infiniti will completely give up on large vehicles, as reports say that the company plans a fullsize flagship model, to rival the BMW 7 Series, the Audi A8 and the Mercedes-Benz S-Class.