Japan’s Nissan Motor Co will sell its Infiniti luxury branded cars in Japan, aiming to tap into the growing demand for premium cars and to better sway with German luxury rivals.
According to a report by Japanese business daily Nikkei, the automaker is aiming to also introduce the refreshed Skyline luxury sports sedan under the Infiniti brand, starting as early as this year’s end – in the States the model is currently badged as the Infiniti Q50 and has a base price of $36,700 (3.6 million yen). The price and sales numbers in Japan have yet to be set and a manufacturing facility in the Tochigi Prefecture will build the new model, the Nikkei said.
Nissan’s chief executive Carlos Ghosn has already unveiled a new profit target in May for Infiniti, which in recent years was not the contributor to the automaker’s operating profit that was expected, owing its failure to export struggles. Infiniti models, built mostly in Japan and exported overseas, made up less than 1 percent of Nissan’s operating profit in the last two years, Ghosn told reporters at the time.
The automaker has planned to use the new Infiniti-brand cars from within existing Nissan dealerships, with currently no plan to introduce a separate, exclusive sales network for now. Also, after the company sees the sales trend from the model’s introduction, it will also decide whether to expand the lineup in Japan, Nikkei said.