Last year Nissan Group in Canada achieved several sales milestones with 115,445 units sold, an increase of 26.1 per cent and growing market share to 6.2 per cent from 5.2 per cent in 2013. The Nissan brand surpassed the 100,000 mark for the first time with sales of 105,154, an increase of 27.3 per cent. The Infiniti brand sold more than 10,000 vehicles for the first time in a single year, an increase of 15 per cent compared to 2013.
Product is just one of many factors which contributed to Nissan becoming the fastest growing brand in Canada, said Christian Meunier, President of Nissan Canada. Nissan’s success in 2014 is the result of a new five-pillar strategy that governs activity for everyone at the company.
Building strong partnerships with dealers
The relationship between head office and the dealerships has evolved with a new mind-set. The two entities work close together and operate under a totally united attitude known as One Team Spirit. With that, at all levels of Nissan in Canada, performance is boosted by an increase on cross-functional actions and program implementation.
Developing a loyal customer base
Sales gains at Nissan have brought a tidal wave of new customers. As such, Nissan has renewed its focus on providing an optimum customer experience. New customers, as well as loyal ones, are offered enhanced programs to improve customer loyalty.
Ensuring the right vehicles are in the right markets at the right time
Canada is a large, diverse country with many different shopping patterns and the demand for models and corresponding equipment varies from province-to-province. In order to satisfy Canada’s varying national appetite for cars and trucks, Nissan’s vehicle specifications vary quite a bit in each region. Nissan ensures adequate management of the distribution process in order to get the right vehicle at the right place at the right time.
Launching high-quality products with unbeatable value
Nissan’s focus is on its core models (Rogue, Pathfinder, Murano, Altima, Sentra, Versa Note and Micra) and ensuring each offers a compelling value proposition. Each and every Nissan model is equipped specifically for Canada. The Micra subcompact, brought specifically to Canada and not the United States, with its adapted suspensions, 60/40 split rear seats and rear heating ducts unique for Canada is a prime example of this.
Strengthening the Nissan brand amongst Canadians
Delivering the right vehicles for Canada at the right time deserves a marketing and communication approach unique to Canada as well. Nissan took a different approach to marketing with totally home-grown material for advertising and marketing communications, the content focuses 100 per cent on the diverse Canadian market.
Last year the Rogue Winter Heroes campaign resonated very well with viewers. The theme was extended into a new series of ads highlighting the full cross-over line-up. In Quebec, when appropriate, a separate team develops campaigns specific to that market.
The governing theme in our five-pillar strategy is all about reinforcing the Canadian spirit at Nissan. This applies to all areas of the business, but especially at the dealership level and in advertising, says Christian Meunier, president of Nissan Canada. At Nissan, we are steadfastly committed to providing Canadians with the right car at the right place and at the right time. We are working on building the brand in Canada and given our sales growth over the past year, we believe the strategy we have is the right one. We are on track to achieve our Nissan Power 88 target of 8 per cent market share by the end of Nissan’s fiscal year 2016.
2014 was the best sales year for a number of Nissan products across the entire automotive spectrum including the Rogue crossover, LEAF all-electric vehicle (EV), Frontier mid-size truck and the NV200 compact cargo van.
Nissan showrooms saw the arrival of the Nissan Micra in 2014, boasting the lowest starting M.S.R.P. in Canada of $9,998, as well as the lowest cost-of-entry for several key features like automatic transmission and air conditioning. Micra enticed new customers into the Nissan family and in just eight months sales exceeded of 7,800. When Micra is combined with Versa Note – which appeals to different customers shopping for small cars – Nissan accounts for one out of every five subcompact cars sold in Canada.
The sales leader is the Rogue crossover, which accounted for nearly one quarter of the brand’s sales at 28,827, up 70.8 per cent from a year ago. Launched as an all-new model last winter, the Nissan Rogue has proven itself to be a formidable contender in the hotly-contested crossover segment. It rounds out Nissan’s incredibly popular cross-over line-up with the compact and sporty Juke, the family-friendly and multi-purpose Pathfinder and the refined and head-turning Nissan Murano, which is all-new for 2015.
In 2014, the Nissan Murano crossover achieved a sales gain of 39 per cent – such growth is pretty unusual for a vehicle in the last model year of its generation! The product is excellent and when it’s well accompanied with thoroughly calculated sales and marketing support, it shows that Nissan’s five-pillar strategy is efficient, added Meunier
Globally, Nissan is the pioneer of electric mobility, having launched the world’s first mass-marketed, fully-electric car – the Nissan LEAF – in 2010. Nissan is the worldwide sales leader in electric vehicles with over 155,000 on the roads globally and the same holds true here in Canada. In 2014 sales increased 131 per cent over the previous year to 1,085 units, rendering it the top selling all-electric vehicle.
As we enter the new year, we are busier than ever working on the launches for two key products in 2015, added Meunier. First, the all-new Nissan Maxima four-door sports car followed by the completely re-designed Nissan Titan full-size pick-up truck. Whether you’re a customer or employee, there has never been a more exciting time to be part of the Nissan family in Canada. It is my pleasure to lead our all-star team into our 50th anniversary in Canada and continue this unprecedented sales momentum.