Japanese automaker Nissan, on Tuesday, announced that it would sell its Datsun brand cars directly through its own dealer network in India instead of the one set up by its sales and service partner Hover Automotive.
“This arrangement will, in particular, allow Datsun to rapidly establish a top quality, expansive retail network, and open the brand to a large segment of the potential market straight from the initial launch,’’ said a company statement.
While the reasons for a separate arrangement were not disclosed, Nissan, however, said “Datsun will work primarily with existing dealer investors who have already demonstrated high capabilities and commitment to the Nissan brand in recent years.”
Nissan brand cars are being sold through Hover, which is the company’s sales, marketing and service partner in India.
Nissan is gearing up for the formal launch of Datsun Go, first all-new hatchback of the Japanese auto maker’s revived iconic Datsun brand, for low-budget car customers in India, in early 2014. Datsun Go will come with five-doors and 1.2-litre engine paired with a five-speed manual transmission.
“Selling the Datsun GO and future Datsun models through Nissan Motor represents a natural evolution of the company’s operations in India, which are well recognised in the market,” said Vincent Cobee, Global Head of Datsun.
Datsun is expected to help Nissan boost its volumes in a market where its own models are struggling for growth, while it will also drive increased competition in the Indian entry-level car segment, which is being dominated by Maruti Suzuki and Hyundai. The car will be manufactured at the Renault-Nissan facility at Oragadam near here.