Its future depends on this new plan.
Nissan faced problems even prior to the ousting of now-former CEO Carlos Ghosn, but these issues were exacerbated following his departure. The carmaker is lacking new products in the always important North American market and its dealerships have made this a key issue. The current lineup is aging fast. The Nissan Frontier, for example, dates back to 2004 (although it'll reportedly be replaced next year). The next-generation Nissan Rogue is also just around the corner. The average age of a Nissan in the US is over 5 years. That number needs to be lowered to 3.5. A detailed plan is needed to accomplish this and more.
Reuters claims it has received the first details regarding Nissan's revival plan. Set to officially be announced on May 28, the plan places a strong emphasis on the US. Up until now, Nissan has relied on steep discounting to keep sales going, but this also cheapens the brand in the long run.
Enter the revival plan. "This is not just a cost-cutting plan," said an anonymous inside source. "We're rationalizing operations, reprioritizing and refocusing our business to plant seeds for the future."
This plan calls for greater cooperation with Nissan's alliance partners, Mitsubishi and Renault, in the areas of plug-in and electric technologies. The plan also involves freeing up resources and investing in technology and new products for core markets where Nissan believes it's strongest: the US, Japan, and China. But what about Europe? Does this mean Nissan is retreating from the continent?
No, but it will reduce its presence and focus mainly on already popular vehicles, the Juke and Qashqai crossovers. Other markets like India, Malaysia, South Africa, Brazil, and Mexico will also receive smaller and more targeted lineups. The Patrol SUV should be safe because it's still a popular seller in those countries.
However, Nissan might be closing more assembly plants on top of the 14 it previously announced. Nissan's new approach is to focus less on quantity of sales and instead place more emphasis on the quality of sales. One key way it'll do this is by reducing sales to rental and fleet operators.
Full plan details will be revealed in the coming weeks and it seems Nissan officials know exactly what needs to be done to survive, though some sacrifices will undoubtedly be necessary.