Nissan’s budget car brand Datsun, which was introduced in India three years ago, is playing a stellar role for the Japanese major. It is, in fact, driving the sales numbers for the parent company in the Indian market. Nissan drove into India in March 2010, when it set up its 480,000 units per annum production facility in Tamil Nadu.
As per SIAM sales statistics, the Datsun brand which sold a total of 23,602 units in the first seven months of FY2017-18, accounts for 76 percent of the total sales for the Nissan brand in India.
From the sales table below, it’s amply clear that Datsun has become the volume driver. From an initial contribution of 37 percent in FY2015, the budget brand has more than doubled its sales ratio to 75 percent in the ongoing financial year.
Since its introduction three years ago, Datsun has sold a cumulative of 105,869 units in India out of the total 175,458 units sold by Nissan in India. Yesterday, the Datsun Redigo got an improved rating in the 2017 JD Power India Initial Quality Study. Jerome Saigot, MD, Nissan Motor India said, “Over the last three years, the customer response to the Datsun portfolio which includes the Go, Go+ and Redigo has been incredible. Datsun today accounts for more than half of the total sales of Nissan Motor in India and continues to steadily grow.”
The Datsun portfolio currently has three product offerings, which includes the Go and Redigo hatchbacks and the Go+ MPV, with starting price of Rs 311,000 to 515,000 (ex-Mumbai). Nissan India’s product range consists of the Micra and Micra Active hatchbacks, Sunny sedan and the Terrano SUV, with a starting price of Rs 568,000 for the Micra Active to Rs 16.06 lakh for the top-end Terrano. The GT-R supercar is sold as a CBU and is a halo product for the Nissan brand.
Nissan clearly is looking for a vehicle that will help it recharge its sales in India. Will the India-bound Kicks crossover, which is to be revealed at the Auto Expo in New Delhi in February 2018, be the game-changer?