The new generation Nissan X-Trail is turning out to be too expensive for India if brought by the CBU route and the volumes do not justify assembling the model in the country as yet.
Taking a top-down approach, Nissan started its operations in India with the very potent X-Trail SUV and Teana sedan back in 2005. Being brought in as a CBU, the X-Trail found limited takers and was discontinued from the Indian market earlier this year with negligible sales over the past year. Nonetheless, Nissan India was expected to get the third generation model to the country in 2015 which would be assembled at its Chennai based facility this time round. However, we get confirmation from a source privy to the development that the Japanese automaker has axed plans to get bring the all new X-Trail in the country.
While Nissan did state that India will be one of the 9 countries to locally produce the new generation X-Trail globally, the automaker now seems to have withdrawn its plans over the same. The automaker also does not plan to bring the new X-Trail via the CBU route as the model would cost around Rs. 40 lakhs (ex-showroom) with all the additional taxes, and will end up competing against the more coveted luxury range offerings from Mercedes, Audi and BMW. A CKD route was also a possibility, but the company would only take a decision after witnessing a sufficient demand for the SUV as the set-up would consume additional investments and infrastructure at the facility.
However at a price of around Rs. 40 lakhs, it makes little or no sense for any practical buyer to opt for a Nissan X-Trail that competes against the Toyota Fortuner, Renault Koleos, Hyundai Santa Fe and the likes. Essentially a soft roader, the old generation X-Trail was retailed at Rs. 25.11 lakhs (ex-showroom, Delhi) for the top-end variant, and it was expected for the prices to come down significantly with the next generation model being locally assembled. The 2014 Nissan X-Trail has received vast upgrades over its predecessor including the much needed extra third row of seats as well as completely new and upmarket interiors fully loaded with driver aids and creature comforts as well as powerful and frugal engine options.
With a meagre 3 percent market share in the Indian auto market, Nissan India will continue to focus on mass volume products including the Sunny and Micra models in a bid to grow its market share to 8 percent. The company is also working to establish base for the new Datsun brand in the country that competes in the sub Rs. 4 lakh space. The automaker is currently working on expanding its dealer network for both Datsun and Nissan brands.