Few automakers embody the concept of disappointment more than Nissan does. With the notable exception of the GT-R, there's no real reason to buy Nissan's middling, anonymous, bloated-looking cars over their competitors. Many were hoping the Nissan IDx and Infiniti Q50 Eau Rouge would help snap the company out of its coma, but don't bank on that happening.
Automotive News reports that Nissan and Infiniti have "mellowed out" as they head into 2015, shifting their emphasis away from exciting new products like the Eau Rouge, IDx and the electric BladeGlider to focus more on "tried-and-true volume products" and global market share.
Ugh. Basically, their plan is to shy away from compelling products and double-down on boring ones to chase volume. That's awesome. That's what the world needs. It's worked so well for Volkswagen, hasn't it?
The report doesn't say that the on again, off again IDx and Q50 Eau Rouge are in fact dead, but it certainly implies their production chances aren't great. They've been hurt by the departures of two executives who were champions for exciting cars — Andy Palmer, who left for Aston Martin, and Johan De Nysschen, who split for Cadillac, both apparently taking any sense of enthusiasm the company had with them.
Palmer was the one who promised a production BladeGlider, and De Nysschen later took to Facebook to bitch about how it was like pulling teeth to get his engineers to build an actual driver's car.
Maybe there's some hope still. We know a new hybrid GT-R is in development; a new Z is supposedly in the works, even if it seems like they can't figure out what to do with it; and while it won't be for public consumption, their front-engine Le Mans racer seems fascinating.
Get your shit together, Nissan. Give the world something that makes them care about your brand again. The Altima's not going to do it.