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Nissan To Speed Up Its Indian Operation

The carmaker is looking to launch as many as 8 vehicles by 2021, bring hybrid vehicle and ramp up its Datsun brand in the mass consumer segment

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Japanese auto major Nissan Motor has been in India for quite some time but is yet to make an impact in the passenger vehicle market as it has in other markets. The car-maker rather is more successful in using India as an export hub than increasing its presence in the domestic market.

At present, it has a market share of a little under 2 per cent between its two brands — Nissan and Datsun. Nissan wants to take it to 5 per cent by 2021 and for that the company is gearing up its plans for the Indian market. The carmaker is looking to launch as many as 8 vehicles by 2021, bring hybrid vehicle and ramp up its Datsun brand in the mass consumer segment.

Guillaume Sicard, President, Nissan India Operation said, "The structure of Indian market is you have a certain set of population who need global products, they are well traveled and they also have the bank power. So, we can offer that with Nissan. We are also lucky to have two brands which is also difficult to manage at times but it’s also a strength."

The car-maker announced that Nissan will soon bring hybrid car in the Indian market. Nissan is expected to launch X-Trail model in the second half of 2017.

"We are looking at introducing X-trail hybrid this year. While cities like New Delhi and Mumbai are becoming very sensitive on pollutions, others cities may also face such situations," Satinder Singh Bajwa, Vice President – Sales, Network and Customer Relations, Nissan Motor India said.

In recent months, Japanese player Honda also entered the hybrid space. Toyota, also a Japanese carmaker has hybrid vehicle in its domestic line-up. The government and the industry is promoting hybrid vehicles as it serves the dual purpose- better mileage and low pollutant emission.

Not just the hybrid vehicle, the company is also likely to launch a performance hatchback for the Indian market. The new hatchback will compete with Maruti Suzuki Baleno RS and Volkswagen’s Polo. The segment in recent times has witnessed a good growth and attention of young buyers.

As of Datsun brand which contributes more than 50 per cent of Nissan’s India sales, it will be technology, quality and styling to boost its sales in future. Facing tough competition, Datsun managed to sell only 80,000 units in India in the last three years against the set target of 200,000 units.

Sicard said that Datsun vehicles is for the first time buyers and is very important for an emerging market like India.

The company on Monday (March 27) launched the facelift of its popular compact SUV Terrano. Nissan made 22 modifications in the car and priced it between Rs 9.99 lakh and Rs 13.6 lakh.

Terrano operates in the highly competitive segment and will have to compete with the likes of Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza, Hyundai Creta, Renault Duster and Ford EcoSport.

Nissan in India has been manufacturing products in alliance with Renault at its Renault-Nissan Alliance plant in Chennai. Last month, the company touched the milestone of exporting 700,000 Nissan and Datsun cars from India. It exports its cars to 106 countries.


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