If Infiniti Builds A Hot Hatch, Would Americans Buy It?

Industry News / 15 Comments

Why pay more when there's better value elsewhere?

For years, the world enjoyed the pleasures of hot hatchbacks and the overall performance and daily livability they offered. Essentially, they're the best of all worlds for many people. And – finally! – automakers have clued up to the fact that Americans want them, too. The Ford Fiesta ST, Focus ST and RS are proof. The VW GTI is no longer alone in the US, and the new Honda Civic Type-R is on its way. But what isn't sold in the US are luxury hot hatches, such as the Mercedes-AMG 45 and Audi RS 3. Both are sold as sedans in the US, instead.

According to Motoring, Infiniti won't rule out a hot hatch of its own, considering its renewed focus on high-performance with the recent Q60 Black S concept, shown at Geneva. Speaking to Infiniti CEO Roland Krueger, Motoring was told that "At the moment we have this performance car, and we should focus on it," referring to that concept. "But the segment for small hatches needs to be assessed market by market and then we can decide if it's viable to launch a high-performance hatch." We're fairly certain Krueger's research department will provide numbers indicating a luxury hot hatch isn't a good match for the US.

Why would people pay a premium when Ford, Honda and VW already offer such fantastic and less expensive alternatives? Remember, the hot hatch segment is still fairly niche, despite going a bit more mainstream lately. However, Nissan, Infiniti's non-luxury cousin, could benefit from a hot hatch, namely one given the Nismo treatment. Just saying.


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