Two New Infiniti Flagship Concepts Coming Spring 2023
Infiniti is undertaking a brand revisioning. As Infiniti Global Chairman Peyman Kargar put it, the company is now amidst the 2025 electrification era.
It’s a plan to launch electrified vehicles within the next three years and have the majority of the brand’s vehicles electrified by 2030. We had a chance to sit down with Mr. Karger at Infiniti’s Canadian Headquarters to discuss Infiniti’s plans and vision for the future.
First Part of a Three Phase Plan
A point that was made clear multiple times during our sit down is that the brand isn’t looking to completely revolutionize the current vehicle lineup. The goal is to continue the success of recent introductions, like the QX60, and further refresh and renew current models. It’s all part of the first phase of Infiniti’s transformation. There will be some hybrids in this plan, but the majority of plan will be fully battery electric vehicles (BEV).SEE ALSO: 2022 Infiniti QX60 Review: A True Luxury Crossover
Infiniti is fully transparent that even by 2030 some customers will continue to want pure internal combustion engine (ICE) options, and these will remain in the brand’s lineup. Infiniti doesn’t want to give up customers and will continue to offer them choice if there is demand. If that changes down the road as markets and consumer’s tastes change, the plan will adapt.
One part that won’t be included in phase one is the e-power range extender. It has been delayed in favor of fully BEV models. Mr. Karger did mention there will be some hybrids down the road with Infiniti exclusive technology but wouldn’t get into specifics at this time. We hope the e-power does resurface as the concept sounded promising for those who are still not ready to commit to a fully battery electric vehicle.
Phase Two – New Products
The next phase of the plan is to further work on the flagship models, while also introducing new products. Infiniti is fully aware that its current flagship model is a big V8 powered SUV that doesn’t really fit in with the brand’s new direction.Get a Quote on a New Infiniti Model
By spring of 2023 the brand plans to showcase two different flagship model concepts. One model will be the next evolution (or replacement) for the aforementioned QX80. The other will be a sedan-like model on a platform shared with Nissan that features advanced technologies and electrification.
The third and final phase of Infiniti’s plan is look at new segments to expand into for the future.
Not Late to the Party
Although some would state otherwise, Infiniti doesn’t consider the brand’s transformation to battery electric vehicles and hybrids as being late to the market. The company and dealers do not want to make uncompetitive BEVs or ones that just exist for brand identity but are not profitable. The brand doesn’t feel the market is there quite yet to sustain an adequate sales volume of electrified vehicles to turn a profit, but should be within a few years.SEE ALSO: 2022 Infiniti QX55 Joins the Coupe-Crossover Crowd
The brand feels it has a healthy customer base to grow. The goal is less about pushing outright sales volume, but more about re-establishing an identity for Infiniti and letting sales increase organically.
Sharing is Caring (And Financially Prudent)
One of the first electrified Infiniti’s will come on an evolution of the current Nissan D Platform. It’s what underpins a plethora of models like the Nissan Altima, Maxima, Murano, and Pathfinder. It also sees duty for the Infiniti QX60. No details were given what this model could be, but with the world SUV crazy right now, we’d bet on a high riding utility vehicle.
Using a platform shared with Nissan makes sense for Infiniti’s push into electrification. Mr. Krager mentioned that a new platform/model can cost between $400 million – $1 billion to develop. Recouping costs quicker by having multiple vehicles share a platform allows investment into other areas of a vehicle’s development.
The Infiniti Experience
Infiniti’s new philosophy isn’t just about electrified products, the hope is to also enhance the customer experience. The brand wants to make buying an Infiniti feel more special. Create an experience that’s unique and holistic; with sound, scent, and sights of a dealership containing a certain Infiniti signature.
Part of the plan requires ensuring dealers are equipped to handle the electrification push. Both through physical means like service bays and chargers, as well as through training of personnel to understand the specific quirks of EVs. Like the brand’s electrification strategy, this won’t be an overnight change, but rather a continual evolution.
How the Infiniti electrification era will play out is unknown, but we should get the first glimpses of it early next year.
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