Nissan’s newish boss wants to re-engineer the troubled carmaker

NISSAN IS IN for a makeover. On July 15th the Japanese car giant will unveil what is rumoured to be a sleeker, more minimalist logo more in line with the contemporary aesthetic. To its boss, Uchida Makoto, the redesign is the outward expression of deeper reinvention after a turbulent period. He wants to streamline not just the marque but Nissan, too, as a smaller, more efficient business. The new vision was launched in May and he discussed it in a recent interview with The Economist.

Until 2017 Nissan was racing ahead. That year it sold 5.8m vehicles and raked in an operating profit of $5.2bn. Its alliance with Renault of France and Mitsubishi, another Japanese firm, overtook Germany’s Volkswagen to become the world’s biggest carmaker, selling a grand total of 10.6m sets of wheels.

Then things took a turn for the worse. Nissan fell short of targets in America, one of its biggest markets. Chasing volume with ageing models forced heavy discounting, irritating dealers and sullying Nissan’s reputation. A costly push into emerging markets failed to pay off as economies in Brazil and Russia soured. Car sales in China, hitherto a reliable growth market, slumped. The alliance, always fractious, nearly fell apart after its chief architect and chairman (as well as boss of Renault), Carlos Ghosn,...

via Business Feeds

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