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Photo: Reuters
Photo: Reuters

Nissan India plans global debut of compact SUV

  • The company aims to strengthen its revival plan by launching at least one product every year in India
  • Until now, Nissan has not been able to make any big dent in the crowded Indian automobiles space

The Indian unit of Japan’s Nissan Motor Co. plans to make the global debut of a compact sport utility vehicle (SUV) in the first half of this year, with an eye on turning around its fledgling domestic operations.

After India, the model will be launched in other countries. The company aims to strengthen its revival plan by launching at least one product every year in India, focused primarily on the sport utility vehicle segment.

“We would like to have a sustainable and profitable model in India and that strategy will focus on Nissan as the primary brand with multiple product offerings," said Rakesh Srivastava, managing director of Nissan Motor India Pvt. Ltd.

Until now, Nissan has not been able to make any big dent in the crowded Indian automobiles space including with Kicks, the mid-segment SUV it launched last year.

Its latest plan to enter the compact SUV segment won’t be easy either as market leaders Maruti Suzuki India Ltd and Hyundai Motor India Ltd dominate the space with Vitara Brezza and Venue models.

Srivastava said a revival in the company’s fortunes in the local market is possible only by regularly introducing new models.

Nissan’s plan to revive India operations comes at a time when its Japanese parent is under pressure regarding the future of its alliance with Renault SA, its majority shareholder, after the arrest and subsequent escape of its former chairman Carlos Ghosn from Japan.

Ghosn was arrested in 2018 in Tokyo, on charges of under-reporting his remuneration in Nissan and using the company’s resources for personal gains.

“Every business entity of Nissan has been empowered to take their own business decisions. The support from them comes to us in terms of the design of the vehicles, maintenance of quality parameters and empowerment to take our own business decisions. I won’t be able to comment on global operations and as far as the Indian operations are concerned, we are empowered to take our own decisions," added Srivastava.

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