by Rao Bo, Wen Shizhe
FRANKFURT, Sept. 14 (Xinhua) -- The premium-brand car market in China is set to become largest in the world and China is central to Infiniti's globalization strategy, the chief of Infiniti has said.
In an interview with Xinhua during the ongoing Frankfurt Auto Show here, the president of Nissan Motor Co.'s premium brand Infiniti, Johan de Nysschen said, "I think that the overall growth of the Chinese economy continues to be a benchmark in all the premium global markets and the premium sector in China is set to become the largest market in the world."
While the company is centered on the U.S. market at present, Infiniti considers China as a promise with potential; Nysschen contended and added that Infiniti wants to establish China as the second largest market for the company.
Apart from imported vehicles, Infiniti has been accelerating its efforts to localize its manufacturing in China, according to Nysschen, adding that "China is a key focus for us right now."
Under a deal signed in May last year, Infiniti will make cars in China. Nysschen disclosed that the one of the first models will be a lengthened version of Q50.
With regard to its progression in China, Nysschen said the company had got good engagement from the leadership and some "new resources" in place. "We have got new leadership and a new marketing strategy," he said, "we are very pleased at the positive development."
Infiniti unveiled a concept named Q30 at the Frankfurt Auto Show. As a premium compact, Q30's has been considered as a bid by Infiniti to diversify its product portfolio. The company aims to develop more new models to cover over 85 percent of the premium-brand car segment in five years, according to reports.
The car market in China with a potential to grow further is key to Infiniti, which wants to boost its sales in China to 100,000 units in five years.
"It is so important for us to ensure that we position ourselves to participate in that growth," Nysschen said.
Nysschen sees the improved capabilities of Chinese auto makers to catch up with new technical developments. He also noticed a lot of technology transfer in joint ventures in the auto industry. Nysschen believed the Chinese partners in Sino-foreign JVs will be the ones that "emerge most strongly into the Chinese market in the future."