Rumors about Datsun's return have been circulating for years. But only now, with Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn pushing to expand the brand into new markets (e.g., Russia, India, Brazil and China), does it really start to make sense as way to protect the upmarket corporate Nissan identity from being associated with low-cost entry-level vehicles.
The return of Datsun is interesting, but a two-tier strategy is hardly new. For example, Volkswagen uses its entry-level SEAT and Skoda brands to capture the low-cost market (though the two have moved upscale), while General Motors (working with SAIC) recently launched Baojun to target first-time buyers in China. According to TheDetroitBureau.com, the Nikkei also notes that Nissan officials have not commented on the report.