Nissan to launch 15 new models in China by ’12 image

Nissan Motor Co aims to launch 15 new models in China by 2012 as the prospects for growth in the world’s second-largest auto market remain bright, said today. These models include 10 passenger cars and five light commercial vehicles.

Andy Palmer, senior vice president of Nissan Motor, announced this plan last week at the Shanghai auto show, saying the Chinese auto market will become increasing important in Nissan’s global strategy. However, amid the global financial crisis, Nissan also has to curb its China spending, which accounts for 14% of its global sales, said Palmer.

Besides, the company will have to delay some investment projects. The adjustments are minor ones and overall nothing has changed, he said. Nissan’s vehicle sales in China rose 9% to 144,603 units in the first quarter from a year earlier, thanks to the Chinese government’s incentives to boost demand for vehicles.
The car maker has forecast China sales of 570,000 units this year, up 4.6% from 2008 when sales rose 19 percent. Palmer said the full-year goal is conservative because the firm expected the effect of China’s stimulus measures to wane later this year.

Nissan sold about 4,000 of its premium Infiniti models in China last year. The company displayed its complete lineup including the NUVU electric concept at the Shanghai show. The high-end roadster Nissan GT-R will also be introduced to China in 2009.