Even after a decade long existence in the country, it seems Nissan India is finding it extremely challenging to keep its sales flowing. Introduction of Datsun budget brand with India-spec models didn’t help the matters either.
While the Japanese automaker is one of the top passenger car exporters from the country, sales in the domestic market have been dwindling of late. As of July 2015, the company has registered 10th consecutive monthly sales decline (compared to the corresponding months of previous year).
The downfall started in the month of October 2014 when Nissan India sold just 2,762 units as against October 2013’s sales of 4,879 units. Since then the monthly sales have been registering a steep decline. During the last 10 months, Nissan launched Terrano 1st Anniversary limited edition, Terrano Groove limited edition and Micra X-CVT XL limited edition. There was no new product launch activity after Terrano.
Sales decline could be attributed to its top seller Terrano eventually losing the initial euphoria owing to expectation created among prospective customers by newer Hyundai Creta and Maruti S-Cross over the past several months. Sunny sedan and Micra hatchback too lost their sheen as new rivals from other manufacturers took lead. Non-existent demand for Evalia MPV resulted in production halt of the model.
Nissan India’s absence in fast growing market segments like sub-4 metre sedan (a derivative of V-Platform is said to be in the works), mini SUV (a sub-4m production variant of Kick concept?), and a premium SUV (2015 X-Trail) could also explain the continuing sales slump.
The company which is vying for a 5% market share in India for some years now, has managed to achieve a market share of just 0.67% (only above Datsun, Skoda, Fiat and Mitsubishi). The company needs to take bold moves such as aggressive product plans for both Nissan and Datsun brands, expansion of dealership network (300 outlets planned by 2016) and revamp its existing portfolio in order to start moving towards their aim.