With Toyota and Honda hybrid sales surging, especially in Japan, Nissan says it will now consider expanding its hybrid line-up in the near future.
Honda and Toyota, with the new Insight and next generation Prius, have seen their sales skyrocket in Japan with the new government policies benefiting hybrids and fuel efficient cars. Nissan may no longer be able to afford to wait on hybrids.
Nissan has been cautious (to the say the least) in their approach to hybrids. Nissan CEO Ghosn has stated he 'hates selling cars for a loss' (paraphrase), which is why Nissan has been slow to enter the hybrid marketplace. But they did buy hybrid technology for the Nissan Altima (even if they only sell it in eight states in the US), and have worked to develop their own hybrid technology, expected in an Infinity late next year.
But now that Honda and Toyota have shown how well hybrids can do, Nissan is considering expanding their hybrid line-up (Source: AFP: Nissan Motor may expand hybrid range: official)
"It will be a waste to limit our self-developed hybrid system to just one model. It's only natural to expand the system to our other models," he said.Nissan has said they want to expand into electric-only vehicles, with a plan to mass-market zero-emission cars to fleet customers in 2010.
"Sales of hybrids are strong, and if we only have luxury hybrids, our market will become narrow," he added.