Are Nissan passenger automobiles gone ceaselessly? The model is in full SUV mode, launching new variations of the Pathfinder, X-Path and Qashqai imminently, however aside from the Leaf and Z there aren’t any sedans or hatchbacks to be seen within the Japanese model’s Australian line-up.
Even the alternative for the second-generation Leaf is alleged to be some kind of crossover, so is that it for the model’s conventional automobiles altogether?
Talking on the launch of the brand new X-Path in Japan, Nissan is indicating this is likely to be the case.
When requested if Nissan would renew its passenger automobile vary (which nonetheless consists of the Skyline, Fuga, Cima sedans, and Notice hatch in Japan) and whether or not these nameplates would have a Toyota Crown-style crossover refresh, Nissan executives stated: “With regard to our sedans; we imagine that know-how is vital to constructing a automobile which displays the Nissan model.
“We might create a complete new vary of sedans, however provided that they mirror what Nissan at the moment stands for.”
Relating to the X-Path, Nissan was clear this model imaginative and prescient means sustainability, know-how, and security.
Representatives wouldn’t particularly touch upon the way forward for its Japanese home sedan vary, consisting of the Skyline, Fuga, or Cima particularly, however defined: “Globally, sedans are reducing, in Japan they’re reducing. Market share [globally] now’s solely round 5 %.”
Nissan’s 2030 imaginative and prescient report reveals that the model is busy fixing its status within the US (the place ex-CEO Carlos Ghosn targeted on positioning it as a fleet-focused model), bringing down the age of its merchandise, and doubling down on its momentum in markets like China. It additionally plans to transform extra nameplates to e-Energy hybrids and electrical autos.
So what occurred to Australia’s most cherished Nissan passenger automobile nameplates? Let’s take a look.
The Nissan Pulsar ceased to exist in Australia in 2016 after a lacklustre closing technology (C12) launched in 2013. We by no means acquired the new-generation C13 model which arrived in 2014 for the European market.
In Japan, the Pulsar (there often known as the Sylphy) was ultimately changed by the hybrid outfitted Notice hatch and Nissan Leaf EV, whereas a small sedan lives on within the US often known as the Versa.
The Leaf electrical automobile is about as near a Pulsar as you’ll be able to at the moment purchase in Australia.
The Nissan Skyline, regardless of its lengthy historical past and the status of the badge amongst automobile fans, has not been formally offered in Australia since simply 100 variations of the R32 had been offered within the early ‘90s.
The highest efficiency grade GT-R was spun-off into its personal nameplate for the R35 technology, solely simply discontinued in Australia, whereas the Skyline nameplate continued in Japan as a Nissan-badged model of what we knew because the Inifiniti Q50.
There’s precedent for a Skyline crossover within the vein of the brand new Toyota Crown, as a result of there’s even been one earlier than. We knew it in Australia because the Infiniti QX50, which was a spin-off of the twelfth-generation (V36) Skyline, and it continues to at the present time within the US market because the second-generation QX50 which launched in 2019. The QX50 is now not offered or in-built Japan.
The fifth-generation Altima mid-size sedan was discontinued in Australia in 2017, packing both a 3.5-litre V6 or 2.5-litre four-cylinder driving the entrance wheels by way of a CVT computerized. On the time it was sourced from Thailand and served as Nissan’s direct rival to the Toyota Camry.
The Altima lives on for a sixth-generation in America and China, the place it’s also constructed. It dumped the three.5-litre V6 and as a substitute powers on with both a 2.0-litre turbocharged or 2.5-litre non-turbo four-cylinder engine, in both front- or all-wheel drive.
There isn’t any direct alternative for the Altima in Australia, with the closest mid-size choice being the X-Path mid-size SUV.
The Maxima was Nissan’s flagship sedan in Australia till it was discontinued in 2013. On the time it was the prime rival of the Toyota Aurion, but additionally competed with native favourites, the Holden Commodore and Ford Falcon.
Extra just like the Aurion, the Maxima was front-wheel drive and supplied a giant 3.5-litre V6 driving the entrance wheels by way of a constantly variable computerized. Whereas it reached its finish in Australia earlier than the Altima, it continued within the US and China for an eighth-generation mannequin in 2016. Within the US it continues to be supplied with a 3.5-litre V6, however in China is obtainable with a 2.5-litre four-cylinder. Not like the new-generation Altima, it’s front-wheel drive solely.
Just like the Altima, no alternative for the Maxima is obtainable in Australia, with the closest choice being the incoming new-generation Pathfinder SUV.
It’s particularly notable that passenger automobiles just like the Altima and Maxima should not supplied with the model’s newest e-Energy know-how, nor do they characterize the model’s newest sustainability promise as talked about by executives.
Given Nissan’s promise to cut back the variety of nameplates it presents globally, it might be unsurprising to see these fashions rolled collectively into new world choices or discontinued altogether.
Is it the top of the Nissan passenger automobile? Whereas a few of these automobiles might proceed on, notably as Nissan is rising within the Chinese language market the place sedans are nonetheless standard, it seems that the model’s mission has change into largely targeted on SUVs because it hybridises and rationalises its vary. Watch this house as we regulate Nissan’s future plans for Australia.