Infiniti has global sales plan for JX crossover
NASHVILLE -- Nine months after its launch, Infiniti's three-row JX crossover is being queued up for a global sales campaign.
Infiniti says it intends to export the U.S.-made vehicle to Russia, China, Taiwan and the Middle East. Last month Infiniti also said it will export the JX to Brazil as part of an initial wave to enter that market in 2014.
The luxury crossover is turning into a big-volume product for Infiniti, just as company officials predicted. U.S. retailers sold 2,529 units last month, and just under 19,000 since its launch in March.
That was the hit Infiniti was hoping for to offset its lower-volume FX crossover and the disappointing EX. Infiniti Americas Vice President Ben Poore has suggested the JX eventually could sell in the range of 70,000 units a year.
Exporting the model could put some strain on its factory source, the Nissan Motor Co. assembly plant in Smyrna, Tenn., which builds multiple models. The plant also turns out the redesigned Nissan Pathfinder, built off of the JX platform, which began reaching Nissan retailers last month. Both are front-wheel-drive unibody products.
The Pathfinder version had sales of more than 8,000 units in November.
But exporting the JX from Smyrna represents a new global strategy for Infiniti. Until recently, all Infiniti models were sourced for world markets out of Japan. Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn instead is preparing to put high-volume Infiniti models into plants around the world, supplying an expanding list of overseas markets from an assortment of factories.
Ghosn has declared his intention to move Infiniti production out of Japan, where the brand is not sold.
The company is also facing an imminent decision on where to build a new small sport sedan that executives have been hinting about for the past year. Like the JX, it too is envisioned as a high-volume product for Infiniti.
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