What’s old is new again: earlier this year, Nissan announced that it would be reviving the Datsun brand name for emerging markets. Now, a new report states that Datsun won’t be limited to Asia: there’s a good chance the name will also be expanded to cover African markets as well.
Nissan is hoping to get a slice of the pie in Africa’s emerging markets, where there is a growing middle class. Right now, its cheapest offering is the Micra hatchback that sells for the equivalent of about $13,000, says Bloomberg. Indian and Chinese automakers Tata and Geely have already begun to make inroads into the low-cost African car market thanks to their expertise in the segment in Asia.
With Datsun, Nissan is looking to do the same. As of now, the new cheap-car brand is slated only for India, Indonesia, and Russia. What Datsun’s new range will consist of has yet to be detailed, but if it is looking to enter the African market, company officials will need to keep engineering and manufacturing costs down. Bloomberg reports that 40 percent of the population in Africa still lives on roughly $3 a day, and Geely’s entry-level LC retails for around $11,000.
Nissan is also planning on doubling its African production in the next four years – the company currently produces about 90,000 units on the continent, 50,000 of which are built in South Africa.