Infiniti, Nissan’s luxury division plans to boost its sales 100,000 vehicles by 2016 from 12,500 last year, CEO Carlo Ghosn said.
“This new vehicle represents a significant opportunity for the Infiniti brand to reach new consumers and grow in key markets such as western Europe,” said Andy Palmer, who is the Nissan executive vice president responsible for Infiniti.
Infiniti seeks to lift total global sales to 500,000 vehicles a year as part of the company’s six-year mid-term business plan. Its growth strategy is expected to be driven partly by demand in China and other fast-growing Asian markets, which can be served more effectively by consolidating Infiniti’s global downstream functions in Hong Kong.
In Europe, the brand will focus on the new compact-premium model that will hit the market in 2014. The Europe-built model, which will compete against the Audi A3, BMW 1 series and Mercedes Benz new A-class, will take design cues from the Etherea concept that was unveiled at the 2011 Geneva auto show.
Speaking of Mercedes-Benz, the new Infiniti will likely ride on the same underpinnings as the current A and models.
The report says Nissan is set to use a number of Daimler components in the new compact, including Mercedes-Benz four and six-cylinder engines.
Magna Steyr is expected to produce between 50,000 and 60,000 Infiniti units per year. The two companies are currently finalizing the details of the agreement.