The hybrid and new clean diesel technologies are pitted "head to head" in the United States and "it is going to be interesting to see how the market reacts," Ghosn told reporters after a Nissan shareholders meeting.
"When you go to the market, the decisions are going to be in function of the customers' reaction to the two technologies. Frankly, it is not obvious today," he said.
The head of the two auto giants said Renault and Nissan were working with both hybrid and diesel technology but will produce cars according to consumer demand. "When the market will shift, we will follow."
What is obvious to me is this is how and why the company will always be behind the curve. There's a time and place for conservatism, but Ghosn seems to take this to the extreme.
When hybrids come to mind, the Prius is first and foremost in everyones thoughts. The reason being, it was one of the first, and it still gets one of the best fuel economy ratings. On the back of their hybrid sales, Toyota has propelled itself into the top tier of automakers worldwide.
The Nissan Altima, on the other hand, has just come to market. It is built using Toyota technology. It is being sold in only eight states. Nissan is hoping to have their own hybrid engine by 2010.
As Ghosn said, they will follow. It seems Nissan will always be a follower.
Source of quote: The Peninsula On-line: Qatar's leading English Daily