Renault-Nissan alliance chief Carlos Ghosn told reporters today at the North American International Auto Show press preview that he’s bullish on 2012 — predicting new gains in market share in the United States and around the world.
Ghosn said Nissan had boosted market share from 7.8 percent to 8.2 percent in the United States and in 2012 “this is going to continue.” The company is launching new products, including a new Pathfinder. Nissan gained market share in every major market around the world. “The company is moving in the right direction,” Ghosn said.
Ghosn predicts 13.8 million vehicle sales for the auto industry in the United States in 2012
“We think we’re going improve the progress in volume and in market share in 2012,” Ghosn told reporters in a roundtable discussion. Ghosn’s goal is to get at least 10 percent market share in very segment in the United States, and plans to replace the Titan with a new model.
Ghosn said he thought Nissan would be become the No. 1 Japanese automaker in Europe in 2012. He predicted Nissan would double sales of its all-electric Leaf in 2012 worldwide — including about 20,000 in the United States. The company sold about 9,700 in seven states in 2011 — and will expand to all 50 states by the end of 2012.
Ghosn predicted European auto sales would fall 3 percent in 2012 — and would be worse in the first half. But he doesn’t see “armageddon” in Europe, despite debt troubles. “I don’t believe armageddon will happen in Europe,” he said. “Europe is going to struggle until it finds solutions to its many problems,” Ghosn said.
He also said Nissan will boost capacity for the Altima — which is now the second best selling sedan in the United States. Ghosn admitted he’d like the Altima to be the best selling sedan in the United States — but didn’t offer any predictions. He said Nissan needs to do a better job in Canada.