Along with cutting 12,500 jobs, Nissan plans to trim at least 10 percent of its global lineup, the automaker announced last week. The product cuts will happen through March 2022 and will focus mainly on small vehicles, Automotive News reports. Nissan isn’t the only one affected by the product cuts; its Infiniti luxury division and the Datsun brand in emerging markets are also included.
In the U.S. market, Nissan could axe cars and focus more on crossovers. The new Versa, however, appears to be spared because of its appeal to price-sensitive buyers, according to AutoPacific analyst Ed Kim who spoke with Automotive News. On the other end of the spectrum, sports coupes may end up getting dropped because of low demand. Nissan’s 370Z, which is more than a decade old, and the Infiniti Q60 have seen sales plummet 35.8 percent and 48.8 percent, respectively, year to date.
SUVs and crossovers continue to be Nissan’s breadwinners in the U.S. The Titan pickup, on the other hand, has declined in sales and could end up on the chopping block. Jeff Schuster, president of global forecasting at LMC Automotive, told Automotive News that “if Nissan decides it doesn’t want to play in that segment because it can’t be competitive, the Titan nameplate could go.”
Nissan’s EV offensive outlines eight upcoming all-electric models and 1 million annual sales, but that could also lead to more models getting cut across all regions. In the U.S. market, the most likely candidate for discontinuation is the Maxima, which has declined in significance now that the Altima has grown into a midsize sedan. If it lives on, Automotive News predicts that the Maxima could turn into an electrified model.
In a bid to cut unprofitable models, Nissan has discontinued the Versa Note after the 2019 model year while the polarizing Juke got axed after the 2017 model year. The Nissan Kicks effectively replaces both cars in Nissan’s U.S. lineup and gives the brand an attainable, budget-friendly crossover. There’s no word on whether the next generation Sentra, which was previewed by the Chinese market Sylphy, will come to North America.