Editorial

Infiniti Said To Hell With a Mercedes S-Class Fighter

It's got something much better planned.

Not so long ago, Nissan nearly gave the word to have Infiniti canned. Renault-Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn instructed his managers to either kill it or make it relevant. And despite the fierce competition from the familiar German premium automakers, Infiniti managed to find the right man to get it back on track. Former Audi executive Johan De Nysschen, a South African native, was hired back in 2012 after a successful 19-year career with the Germans.

Not only is he a marketing and sales genius, he’s also a car guy. Here’s possibly the best example of his thinking: Infiniti and Nissan execs were keen on building a genuine Mercedes S-Class competitor. De Nysschen comes in and flat-out says that’s a horrible idea. It’s already tough for BMW and Audi to compete with the S-Class, so how the hell can Infiniti do it when it can already barely compete with BMW and Audi as a whole? It’s simple logic, really. De Nysschen is taking to full advantage the tools that he’s got, and he has plenty. Instead of that large S-Class fighter flagship, Infiniti will launch a production version of the Q50 Eau Rouge Concept.

You know, the sedan that's powered by the GT-R’s 3.8-liter twin-turbo V6. It’ll produce somewhere in the neighborhood of 568 horsepower and 442 lb-ft of torque. It will be, for lack of a better word, epic. So, an S-Class fighter or a Q50 with that GT-R engine as the new Infiniti flagship? It’s a no-brainer.

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