• Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
  • Image Credit: Infiniti
Johan de Nysschen had only been at the helm of Infiniti for two years when he left for a position atop Cadillac. But in that time, he indeed left his mark on the brand. Most visibly, there was the drastic Q-ification of the company's vehicle naming strategy, but beyond that were big plans to beef up the Infiniti brand with the goal of making it a fully competitive luxury automaker.

Autoblog spoke with Michael Bartsch, vice president of Infiniti Americas, during Monterey Car Week, and he confirms Infiniti's brand direction is "still exactly as Johan presented it." Over the next five years, the company's portfolio will expand by 60 percent, and that will be aided with additional engine and transmission plants, most notably the recent collaboration with Daimler to build 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engines.

Infiniti's lineup will grow to include eight sedans/coupes and five crossovers/SUVs.

As for products, Bartsch let slip that Infiniti's lineup will grow to include eight sedans/coupes and five crossovers/SUVs – 13 model lines in total, up from the present eight. No specific models were disclosed, though Bartsch did note that Infiniti will still be getting a dedicated EV, and the company recently confirmed a new QX30 crossover based on the Q30 small car concept, pictured above.

Furthermore, Bartsch said that Infiniti is still committed to offering a performance division that can be put to use on "products across all model lines." Currently, the company offers IPL versions of its Q60 coupe and convertible, though when asked if that nomenclature will be used moving forward, Bartsch said that at the moment, the goal is for Infiniti to define its performance division, not brand it. No word was given as to what the next performance product will be, with Bartsch simply giving the example that if the company were to build something like a Q30, there will be a performance version, and so on.

For now, the company is still rolling out its all-new Q50 sedan, though Bartsch admits that "we need a strong four-cylinder" in this product. In March, Infiniti rolled out a 2.0T engine for its Q50 in Europe and China, and Bartsch confirmed that this configuration will eventually be offered in the US. Speaking of the Q50 Hybrid, we're told that this is still a small percentage of the Q50 demographic, with roughly 12 percent of all sales having the electrified powertrain.

Either way, Infiniti is "not trying to take the Germans out," Bartsch reiterated. Instead, the company is trying to offer its own take on luxury and performance, but only time will tell if these future product plans can transform the brand's fortunes in the way de Nysschen hoped.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 22 Comments
      normc32
      • 1 Year Ago

      Too many "Q's" makes me queasy.

        pavsterrocks
        • 1 Year Ago
        @normc32

        I took a GLK on a test drive recently and asked the sales guy to explain Mercedes naming system.  He couldn't.  


        At least the new nomenclature from Infiniti has got consistency.

          johnbravo6
          • 1 Year Ago
          @pavsterrocks

          Geländewagen Luxus Kompaktklasse

          carguy1701
          • 1 Year Ago
          @pavsterrocks

          Oh wow, a car salesman who doesn't know anything about what he sells. That's totally unheard of.

          Infiniti's naming scheme makes no sense. Very few people outside of enthusiasts remember the original Q45, and even then most people remember it for the terrible ad campaign that crippled the brand for nearly 10 years.

      Bernard
      • 1 Year Ago

      "Infiniti is "not trying to take the Germans out," Bartsch reiterated. Instead, the company is trying to offer its own take on luxury and performance"

      Thank you! I wish Cadillac had the same attitude. If you play the German's game you're going to lose because they own that turf and their customers only want German anyway. If you create your own game then you have the chance to move the market in a new direction, one that you control.

        x percent
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Bernard

        Yeah, Caddy should build really soft floaty cars that fee like your living room couch. Oh yeah, they tried that already and it didn't go so well.

          Bernard
          • 1 Year Ago
          @x percent

          Way to miss the point. Cadillac has sharp handling these days and the Germans are the ones getting heavy and numb and adding FWD 4 cylinder cars at premium prices. Cadillac doesn't need to copy that. They tried the Cimarron already and they don't need to repeat that crap just because MB wants a Honda Civic clone.

        pavsterrocks
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Bernard

        Yeah exactly.  The Germans have something neither the Japanese nor American luxury makes do at this point - a certain panache associated with their logos.  

      Zeta
      • 1 Year Ago

      Infiniti is pretty bold to want to redefine luxury car with their own vision of it. Interesting. We'll wait and see.

      carguy1701
      • 1 Year Ago

      And they'll all have that crappy steer-by-wire system.

      ffelix422
      • 1 Year Ago

      In that color it looks like one of the three little pigs.


       

      mikeybyte1
      • 1 Year Ago

      That's a pretty big expansion. Excited to see what they come up with. Personally I like most of the Infiniti design language. I just hope they take a new approach on the interior infotainment controls to differentiate it more from standard Nissan. They suffer the same problem as Lincoln sharing Ford, and Acura sharing Honda - in that area, plus powertrains.

      D E S I G N
      • 1 Year Ago

      wow, I actually cringed when I saw this.

      JanaN
      • 9 Months Ago

      This car is sick! Absolutely love it! 

      Joey Franklin
      • 1 Year Ago
      I'm interested to see what Infiniti's Q30 and QX30 will be like. I think they will share a lot of components with the CLA and GLA respectively but maybe just some powertrain stuff. If they start putting CVT's in their cars they will lose any faith i have in them. The JX35 (fancy pathfinder renamed to QX60 maybe) already has one, thats enough.
      Gio
      • 1 Year Ago
      Name change will bring them down... I mean their SALES down. I believe in the saying that " DO NOT FIX THINGS THAT'S NOT BROKEN ". there's no problem in INFINITI's line up name, It's the PRODUCT PLANNING and MARKETING! Don't force them to like your sexy cars. Instead make a boxy boring but ELEGANT and SUPER RELIABLE car.
        futurecars
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Gio

        Infiniti sales have increase year by year so the name change has done nothing against the brand.

          SirYodi
          • 1 Year Ago
          @futurecars

          Actually a lot of repeat buyers do have a problem with the rebadging, it isults the purists. Especially when the only reason for it was so the new guy in charge of Inifiniti could make a quick change that looks like he is making imiediate improvements to the line. It is just a ego play.

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