Nissan North America has set a clear objective for the immediate future and that is to surpass Honda as the number two Japanese automotive brand in the United States.
After a November sales increase of 19 percent, Nissan is adamant it can outsell Honda. “I can’t see any excuse for not overtaking Honda in the U.S. market,” Nissan executive vice president Colin Dodge was quoted as saying by Wall Street Journal. According to the exec, Nissan outsells Honda everywhere in the world except the U.S. and Thailand. He also thinks targeting Honda is crucial to Nissan’s target to boost its market share in the U.S. to 10 percent from the current 8 percent.
“I find it unthinkable that Nissan won’t be at 10 percent of the market. It’s just a matter of when,” Dodge added. Honda’s U.S. market share dropped to 9.1 percent so far this year, compared with 10.6 percent last year. Toyota is the leading Japanese auto brand in the United States, with 12.6 percent of the market.
Nissan relies on the Versa compact to gain market share in the U.S., as segment leader Honda Civic has received a poor reception from the media and customers. Colin Dodge expects the Versa to grab 10 percent of the compact market within two or three years. Nissan’s sales in the U.S. rose 18% to 908,570 vehicles last year, compared with a 7% U.S. sales gain by Honda to 1.2 million vehicles.