Japanese auto major Nissan Motor Corp would launch at least two cars in India’s most competitive auto segment below Rs. 4 lakh through its recently revived Datsun brand by 2014.
A couple of Datsun models will also be launched in Indonesia and Russia, the two other markets where the badge would be functional. Nissan expects the low-cost nameplate would account for 33-45% of its overall sales in these markets by the end of fiscal 2016.
“There will be 2 products in each of these markets and we have already decided on them,” said Ashwani Gupta, programme director, Datsun Business Unit, Nissan Motor Corp. “Others start with products and platforms; we will start with the consumers and hence price is intrinsic to us.”
These cars would not be built on global platforms, and will be low-frill, optimised vehicles suited to the needs of the local market. The three countries would get different models, with little in common. In India, the company is looking to go below Rs. 4 lakh — a segment where Nissan cannot compete — with no bottom prescribed.
The cars would be made at the Renault-Nissan factory at Chennai, but Gupta said there is no synergy planned with Renault, Nissan’s business partner. “Datsun is a Nissan brand, as is Infinity,” he said. “In the course of product development or production there maybe some commonalities (with Renault).”