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Nissan dealers 'gently encouraged' to stock full range

Front and centre: Nissan’s 370Z saw a spike in sales last month, as did the Patrol and Altima, as dealers put them back into stock.

Head office instructs its network to carry more Nissan lines, sales spike as result

Nissan logo1 Jun 2015

By TIM ROBSON

NISSAN Australia's dealer network has been told to toe the line and stock the complete range of the company’s vehicles in showrooms in a bid to improve its sales.

Official VFACTS figures from March and April this year have revealed a sharp spike in the sales of Nissan’s Altima sedan, 370Z sportscar and Patrol SUV, and Nissan Australia managing director and CEO Richard Emery told GoAuto the network has been instructed to carry all lines of its product, where possible, rather than just focusing on hot-selling items.

“I've been reminding our network that they're missing franchise holes,” he told GoAuto at the launch of the Navara ute in South Australia last week. “They’re not just X-Trail, Qashqai and Navara dealers. As such, we had a situation where some of our niche models weren't being fully supported by dealers on the showroom floors.”

Sales of the Altima mid-size sedan, which is supported by an extensive – and expensive – V8 Supercar racing program, have lifted by 72 per cent year on year, with 632 sales posted to April 2015, a marked improvement on the 366 from the same time in 2014.

The 370Z, now in its sixth year on sale, notched 58 sales in March and 37 in April for a year-to-date total of 169, giving the ageing sportscar a 36 per cent lift in its performance from the same period in 2014. This total captures figures for both the coupe and convertible versions of the 3.5-litre V6-powered rear-driver.

The Patrol full-size SUV, meanwhile, has lifted its performance by 15.7 per cent year on year, posting 671 sales for the year so far.

“We've been working really hard with our network to gently encourage them,” said Mr Emery. “They have a responsibility. And surprise, surprise, if you stock one and a customer drives past, they might be interested. That's helped (370Z) Zed, that's helped (Patrol) Y62, and it's helped a number other models as well.”

The X-Trail is currently the brand’s number-one seller, posting 6160 sales for the year thus far, followed by the Navara ute with combined 4x2 and 4x4 sales of 4308 units. The company’s running total of 21,847 for 2015 is ahead of its 2014 result for the same period by 15.7 per cent, or about 3000 cars.

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