Infiniti success won't happen overnight ... but it will happen
INFINTI is taking a leaf out of the Pantene hair treatment book. Success won't happen overnight, but it will happen.
That's the opinion of Infiniti Australia's managing director and CEO Peter Jones who says the new premium brand is ready to take its next step in the market Down Under.
Infiniti is the luxury offshoot of Nissan, working similarly to the relationship between Toyota and Lexus, with most of its cars sold in the United States.
Since launching here in 2012, Infiniti has sold just over 400 cars.
And now, the pressure is building on the just-released Q50 mid-size sedan.
It's the first all-new Infiniti model we've seen come to Australia, and follows the M large sedan, G Coupe and Convertible, as well as the FX Crossover SUV.
The new Q50 comes with a hybrid or diesel drivetrains, with a 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol set to follow later this year.
But for now, much of Infiniti's short-term success lies with the Q50.
"The numbers we are selling today are not the same as the numbers we are going to be selling in years to come," Mr Jones said.
"This Q50 is the next step for us, and this is where our growth begins.
"Building a premium brand in any market is a serious challenge but it's one that we're up for and the Australian market presents an extreme challenge for us with more than 65 brands sold in this country.
"It is not something that is going to happen quickly. It's going to take years."
Infiniti has three dealerships in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane. Other Australian capitals are in the brand's crosshairs, before expanding to larger regional centres.
Model: Q50 Hybrid.
Details: Four-door mid-size rear wheel or all-wheel drive luxury sedan.
Engine: 3.5-litre V6 with 50kW electric motor generating combined maximum power of 268kW @ 7500rpm and peak torque of 546Nm, petrol 350Nm achieved @ 5000rpm.
Transmission: Seven-speed automatic.
Consumption: 6.8 litres/100km (RWD, combined average); 7.2L/100km.
CO2: 159 gram/km; 169g/km.
Performance: 0-100kmh in 5.1 seconds; 5.4 seconds.
Bottom line plus on-roads: S $67,900; S Premium AWD $73,900.
Model: Q50 Diesel.
Details: Four-door mid-size rear wheel drive luxury sedan.
Engine: 2.2-litre four-cylinder turbo diesel generating maximum power of 125kW @ 3200-4200rpm and 400Nm @ 1600-2800rpm.
Transmission: Seven-speed dual clutch automatic.
Consumption: 5.2 litres/100km (combined average).
Performance: 0-100kmh in 8.5 seconds.
Bottom line plus on-roads: GT $51,900 (promotional drive-away price until April of $55,900); S $57,900; S Premium $61,900.