On the seventh month of what is arguably the best sales year for high-end automobiles, Infiniti (the luxury brand of Nissan Motors) has unfortunately gone against the grain of this industry-wide sales boom. Through July 2013, the auto brand reported a 9.1 percent drop in a year-over-year analysis, selling just 59,995 cars — compared to 65,996 units one year ago. It is speculated that sales for the year will adjust upwardly when the new Q50 luxury sports sedan enters the market at the end of August.
"Infiniti and its retailer body across the U.S. are anxiously anticipating the first sales of the all-new Q50 luxury sports sedan later this month," said Ben Poore, Infiniti Americas vice president. "With a highly successful pre-sale program that resulted in more than 3,500 customers reserving their Q50, drivers will soon be experiencing world-first technologies, such as direct-adaptive Steering and predictive-forward collision-warning [systems]."
The Infiniti QX60 7-passenger luxury crossover was up 37.4 percent with sales of more than 2,700 units. Overall, crossovers and SUVs were up 10.5 percent for the month. An additional factor effecting sales negatively could be Infiniti's initiative to change the name of all cars to include the letter "Q" and double digits. Starting in 2014, the automaker's models are based on the letter Q and then a double-digit number to indicate the hierarchy and range of the car. While the move is meant to accommodate the global consumer, it could also prompt a period of adjustment for the U.S., which is currently the automaker's largest market.
"In the U.S., people clearly know the relative position of an Infiniti G versus an M, or an FX versus a JX, but this is not so much the case in Europe or Asia," Infiniti President Johan de Nysschen recently revealed in a conference call.
This month Infiniti began selling the QX50 personal luxury crossover (EX), QX60 7-passenger crossover (JX), QX70 performance crossover (FX), and the QX80 full-size SUV (QX).