Infiniti to see production in Dalian

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China’s luxury market is largely cornered by Audi, BMW and Mercedes in alphabetical order, other manufacturers have tried to take on the market and have had some success but Infiniti can be considered one of the least successful right behind Acura, in 2010 the luxury car market in China looked a lot like this:

  1. Audi – 220,000 units sold
  2. BMW – 169,000
  3. Mercedes – 148,000
  4. Lexus – 53,000
  5. Volvo – 31,000
  6. Cadillac – 17,000
  7. Infiniti – 11,000
  8. Acura – 5,000

Nissan recently moved the Infiniti headquarters to Hong Kong in a bid to get more out of the Chinese market and grow market share in the world’s biggest auto market. Infiniti is apparently planning to put a focus on luxury SUV’s in China with AWD models getting the China production treatment first with production happening in the northern city of Dalian. Dalian is home to a large Japanese community so settling in its engineers won’t be a major issue, Infiniti, Dongfeng and the City of Dalian have already put together a framework of cooperation which is likely to get the go-ahead at the local level but will have to get past national level bodies such as the National Development and Reform Commision (NDRC). The NDRC has already killed off Chery’s plans to produce Subaru’s in Dalian.

Under the framework, Infiniti would produce 25,000 vehicles in its first year of operation in 2014, in 2015 80,000 sedans and 40,000 SUV’s will be produced before being increased to 145,000 vehicles made per year in 2016.

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