• Video
  • Aug 22nd 2012 at 9:55AM
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This summer, Audi CEO Johan de Nysschen made a surprising shift when he moved to join Nissan as the Senior Vice President of Nissan Motor Company in charge of the Infiniti division. His title and home base are not all that's different about the man who used to tout diesel powertrains above all others.

Asked by his own PR department during the 62nd Annual Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance last weekend if Infiniti will introduce a "halo car," de Nysschen said "absolutely." He then rattled off a number of possible powertrains for this vehicle, including compact gasoline engines and diesels. Oh, and plug-in power. Specifically, he said, "The electric powertrain is a very important part of Infiniti's progressive technology attack on the future."

This might come as a bit of a shock to readers who remember de Nysschen as the guy who harshly criticized plug-in cars back in 2009 when he called the Chevrolet Volt a "car for idiots." He later dialed this back a bit, but he's never been an EV's strongest proponent. Now that he's in the house that Ghosn built, he's singing a different tune. Watch it below.

De Nysschen isn't the first auto company executive to have a change of heart when moving to a new company. Exhibit A: Stefan Jacoby.



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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 9 Comments
      Tweaker
      • 2 Years Ago
      Why would we believe anything he says?
        Smooth Motor
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Tweaker
        Because the man is responsible for the huge success of Audi in this market and despite some previous foolish comments, is a top notch car guy who knows this business as well as anybody................
      throwback
      • 2 Years Ago
      This was a great get by Infiniti, This guy knows the luxury car business and Infiniti needs to step out of the Lexus shadow.
      Smith Jim
      • 2 Years Ago
      I'd say he's doing better job of promoting his brand than Bob Lutz who expends an enormous amount of effort trying to piss off environmentalists who might otherwise be receptive customers of the Chevy Volt.
        2 Wheeled Menace
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Smith Jim
        Heh, i think you've been out of touch with the modern Bob Lutz. That guy is turning into a serious hippie. I think he's taking the same path as Lee Iacocca ( who introduced a pretty cool electric bike to America in 1999, when *really* nobody knew what an electric bike was ).
        Ele Truk
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Smith Jim
        Yea, and I thought he retired from GM, but he's still on their payroll. http://media.gm.com/content/media/us/en/gm/news.detail.html/content/Pages/news/us/en/2011/Sep/0902_lutz.html
      Maddoxx
      • 2 Years Ago
      It's a good thing the Infiniti LE has wireless charging option so he doesn't need to plug in.
      2 Wheeled Menace
      • 2 Years Ago
      Cool.. Glad to see the big guys come on board. Going EV is not just for environmentalists and peak oil worriers anymore :]
      Giza Plateau
      • 2 Years Ago
      I wonder if Ghosn knew about Johan's statement about electric cars when hiring him.