After nine long years of lacklustre sales in India, the Japanese multinational automobile manufacturer Nissan Motor Co. has finally pulled the plug from its struggling sub-brand Datsun in the nation. The news of the brand shutting its operations in the country came almost a decade later since Nissan commenced the Japanese marque’s global relaunch in India.
After failing in its earnest worldwide relaunch of the Datsun brand, Nissan decided to phase out the brand in 2020 in Russia and Indonesia, as well as South Africa and India, which were identified as crucial markets for the entry-level vehicle sector.
The parent brand of Datsun – Nissan Motor Co. in its official statement on the discontinuation said,
Production of Datsun redi-GO has ceased at the Chennai plant (Renault Nissan Automotive India Private Ltd). Sales of the model still continue (till the stock lasts).” The official statement further said, “We can reassure all existing and future Datsun owners that customer satisfaction remains our priority, and we will continue to provide the highest levels of after-sales service, parts availability, and warranty support from our national dealership network.
Two years earlier, Nissan announced its global transformation strategy and the cessation of the Datsun brand around the globe was a part of this new strategy. The Japanese carmaker’s Indian subsidiary Nissan India in its transformation strategy statement said, “As part of Nissan’s global transformation strategy, Nissan is focusing on core models and segments that bring the most benefit to customers, dealer partners and the business. In India, this includes the all-new, locally produced Nissan Magnite with over 100,000 customer orders to date,”
Earlier Nissan has also stated that as part of its worldwide transformation plan, it will quit the Datsun business in Russia and simplify operations in various ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) regions. It had also announced that manufacturing operations in Indonesia would be halted. The Japanese auto giant resurrected Datsun in India in July 2013, with the debut of the entry-level hatchback ‘Datsun Go,’ 32 years after the brand was dropped in the country.
Last month, Datsun sold 0 vehicles in the entire country, as none of its three models – Redi-GO, GO+, and Go – could get a customer. The same was the case with the models GO+ and Go in February of this year. Only the entry-level model – Redi-GO managed to sell 239 units in February of this year which is an astonishingly low number for an A-segment hatchback.
In July 2013, the Datsun brand was reintroduced in India, with the global premiere of its first model, the Go hatchback, in Delhi. The Go was launched in early 2014, and it quickly garnered popularity in India because of its inexpensive price tag, which at the time varied between Rs 3.12 lakh and Rs 3.69 lakh (ex-showroom). Datsun then launched the Go+ small MPV in India in early 2015, after the Go. The Go+ was basically a three-row hatchback variant of the Go. Following it, Datsun then revealed the concept vehicle of its smallest offering – the Redi Go at the 2014 Auto Expo and the production model was unveiled on 14 April 2016.