Tag: Infiniti

By on January 20, 2020

The second-generation Infiniti QX50 is a seldom talked-about model that gets plenty of mention on these digital pages, what with its technological wizardry and big launch expectations… that didn’t seem to do the compact crossover much good when it finally reached dealerships.

No problem — maybe customers will take more kindly to its QX55 sibling, teased late last year ahead of an early summer 2020 release. But hold on a second! It appears the QX55 won’t show up at the party until much later than expected. (Read More…)

By on January 3, 2020

2019 Nissan Altima

It was an all-around bad year for Nissan, both globally and in the United States. Turmoil and triage was the order of the day, as the automaker was rocked by the arrest and ouster of its former chairman, an escape artist known as Carlos Ghosn, as well as bad blood and intrigue among members of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi alliance.

Cooling auto sales in most developed markets further hurt the brand’s profitability, even as the automaker strove to reverse its incentive-fueled market share push in favor of a sustainable path forward. That path is proving rocky, despite Nissan’s willingness to stay the course.

The brand’s 2019 U.S. sales are horrendous. (Read More…)

By on December 5, 2019

Image: Nissan

As Christmas looms, Nissan just placed an unwanted gift in the stockings of its U.S. employees. Sinking sales, combined with a global streamlining of its cash-strapped operation, has led the automaker to give all employees two unpaid days off of work in January, Automotive News reports.

In a memo to employees obtained by the publication, Nissan’s U.S. arm laid out the emergency cost-cutting measures in full. It seems no one gets off the hook. (Read More…)

By on December 3, 2019

Infiniti’s Q60 Project Black S has been been flying under the radar for a while. Debuting in 2017 at the Geneva Motor Show, the model occupied an interesting space between concept and prototype. It was basically Nissan’s answer to Mercedes-AMG C 63, a question we’re still not sure anybody outside the company ever asked. But it was engrossing and curiosity grew the more Infiniti paraded it around the globe.

Unfortunately parent company Nissan shot itself in the face several times between then and now, leaving the Black to twist in the wind. Infiniti sales within its best market (the United States) haven’t looked all that healthy this year either and the marque has pulled out of Europe to focus on China. The premium Japanese brand has big aspirations, but many are wondering what it will actually be able to achieve under the current conditions. A flagship performance coupe loaded with complicated hybrid tech seems like something bean counters would be against — especially during hard times.

In August, Infiniti said it was still deciding whether to put the car into production and needed a few months to sort everything out. Development of the hybrid powertrain had been finalized and the company said it hoped to reach a decision before 2020. That time is almost up but hope remains.   (Read More…)

By on November 5, 2019

After teasing us with the most rudimentary sketch we’ve ever seen at this year’s Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, Infiniti has followed up with a secondary teaser of its coupe-styled QX55 crossover.

While there’s a hint of mystery surrounding the vehicle, most of that concerns the exterior. Based on the QX50 SUV, the 55 is likely to be mostly the same, with the largest aesthetic change being a swept-back roofline. That’s probably why Infiniti focused so heavily on that singular aspect in its marketing materials, making us wonder if this this particular fashion of automotive striptease has run its course.

Heavily obscured silhouettes work when there are oodles of hype already surrounding a distinct-looking vehicle. The same cannot be said when an automaker pursues an increasingly common industry trend — like a sloping ceiling. But this isn’t an issue unique to the Infiniti brand or even the automotive sector. Companies know they have to chum the waters more often to excite the ever-fickle media cycle. Unfortunately, with everyone now hip to the practice, it’s rapidly losing its effectiveness.  (Read More…)

By on November 4, 2019

Celebrating 30 years of existence, Infiniti announced it was time for a sea change this week. While sales have improved since the recession, last year saw a modest decline in volume that carried over into 2019 in a big way. Year to date, Nissan volume is down 6 percent, with Infiniti posting a 17.1-percent loss — we discussed this earlier in the day, if you’re interested.

Most of this saga is occuring in the United States, where Infiniti sources the bulk of its sales. China and Europe are footnotes for the manufacturer. Yet Infiniti would very much like to improve its global appeal, so it’s banking on EV adoption as being the next global consumer craze.

Considering how many countries are embracing stringent emission goals, Nissan’s premium arm could be making a wise choice. However, the U.S. hasn’t been quite so eager to push (or embrace) automotive electrification — meaning Infiniti could be endangering the one market that’s keeping it afloat. Unfortunately, the status quo doesn’t seem to be working, either — encouraging the automaker to adopt alternative powertrains and design cues in the coming years.  (Read More…)

By on November 4, 2019

You have to hand it to Nissan. Despite holding a continually declining share of new-car sales in the U.S., the automaker is sticking to its plan to firm up its financial footing.

That means holding the line on incentives and fleet sales — a practice it once revelled in back when the company pushed volume above all else. (Read More…)

By on October 25, 2019

As it moves forward with efforts to streamline its operations and reverse a dismal financial situation, Nissan is reportedly mulling the sale of two of its European plants. One cranks out Infiniti vehicles for a region soon to be devoid of new Infiniti vehicles.

Along with these possible cost-saving moves, the automaker could be thinking of dropping its overseas Datsun brand. (Read More…)

By on October 25, 2019

2016 Infiniti Q70 Premium Select Edition

Infiniti’s largest passenger car is making like the brand’s presence in Western Europe and biting the dust. As the brand’s sales falter, the slow-selling Q70 sedan positioned at the top of the lineup has been discontinued, further reducing Infiniti’s product offerings.

The cancellation was heralded by last year’s axing of the seldom-seen hybrid model. (Read More…)

By on October 4, 2019

2019 INFINITI QX50

Infiniti’s sales took a tumble in September, dropping 44 percent (43.9 percent, to be exact) compared to September 2018.

Last year, Nissan’s luxury brand sold 12,536 units in September, while just 7,031 units left dealer lots this time around. The brand is also down 16.5 percent over the first nine months of the year.

Bigger picture, the industry has been hit by six months of sales declines in 2019, and all large automakers, Asian or American, were facing large drops (double digits, in many cases) in September. The good news for the industry is that the seasonally adjusted annual sales rate (SAAR) checked in around 17.16 million units across all brands – a healthy number despite the sales declines.

(Read More…)

By on September 24, 2019

2019 Nissan Altima

Nissan is recalling over 1.2 million late-model vehicles out of fear that drivers will shift into reverse and see nothing on their infotainment screens. The recall affects 2018 and 2019 models of almost the entire Nissan and Infiniti stable.

Because the backup camera on the affected vehicles can be adjusted to the point that no view of the area behind the vehicle remains, Nissan finds itself in violation of federal safety rules. The problem is not that the image can be adjusted, but that the obscured view will remain after the driver restarts the vehicle and shifts into reverse.

The list of models is a long one. (Read More…)

By on September 19, 2019

Despite sales of the Infiniti Q50 looking a little light this year, Nissan’s luxury arm has decided the model moves in numbers substantial enough to keep it on offer. The same cannot be said for the vehicle’s entry level 2.0-liter turbo, however. The motor will be going away for the 2020 model year, leaving the twin-turbo 3.0-liter V6 as the sedan’s only available powerplant.

Replacing the base 2.0 Pure will be the 3.0t Pure. While a seven-speed automatic transmission continues sending power to the rear wheels (AWD is optional), base models now produce a claimed 300 horsepower. Considering the old 2.0-liter only produced 208 hp, you might think the change comes with a hefty price increase. But you’d be wrong. Infiniti is only asking for $36,400 (plus a $1,025 destination fee) for the base level Q50. That’s just $750 more than last year’s base model four banger. (Read More…)

By on August 22, 2019

On Saturday, Nissan’s North American dealerships found themselves with a problem. A power outage at the automaker’s data center in Denver disabled a system dealers use to order vehicles, procure parts, check on recall statuses, obtain rebate information, and file warranty claims. As a result, the manufacturer’s communications in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico were disrupted. “Some of our dealer business applications have run in a reduced capacity using manual processing,” Nissan said on Wednesday.

Dealers were not pleased. (Read More…)

By on August 16, 2019

Regular readers of these digital pages are well aware of the pressures facing Nissan’s Infiniti brand. While the premium marque’s status is better than in years past, it is not where the brand would like it to be. U.S. volume has declined since 2017, and the marque recently gave up on Europe.

Perhaps a slinky new crossover will draw eyes — and buyers — in an overly crowded segment? (Read More…)

By on August 10, 2019

As it blows out the candles on its 30th birthday cake, Infiniti’s biggest problems aren’t rocks and trees, but sales. That, and a shaky financial foundation underpinning its parent’s house.

Unlike in 1989, when the fledgling premium brand tempted buyers to pick up a new Q45, um, sight unseen, Infiniti is doing all it can to draw pairs of eyes to its real, physical vehicles, launching an Edition 30 trim package to mark the anniversary. (Read More…)

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