Nissan’s market share in the Gulf – excluding Saudi Arabia – rose by 20 percent in the 2017 fiscal year, Nissan Middle East general manager Juergen Schmitz announced on Tuesday.
According to the results unveiled on Tuesday, Nissan sold nearly 85,000 vehicles in the same time period, a 7 percent increase in retail sales compared to 2016.
By 2022, the company expects a total industry volume (TIV) of approximately 777,000 vehicles in 2022.
Of the vehicles, the company saw particularly strong performance among the Nissan Patrol, which in 2017 became the best-selling full-size SUV in the UAE, with its market share increasing by 11.4 percent compared to the previous year.
Additionally, the Nissan Kicks was the best-selling vehicle in the compact crossover segment in UAE in 2017, with a 145 percent year-on-year increase in sales. Another vehicle, the Nissan Sunny, experienced a 58 percent increase in the same time period.
Speaking to Arabian Business on the sidelines of an event in Dubai in which Nissan announced its financial results, Jurgen Schmitz said he partly attributes the results – which he says came in a “difficult” market environment in 2017 – to investments that the company has made in promoting the Nissan brand in the region.
“We’ve invested into the brand with different activities. I think this is important. We’ve always decided to continue doing this, even if the market is more difficult and absolute volumes are going down,” he said. “People [need] to see what we are doing and it’s an important trigger for people not to forget us, and when they come to the purchase decision, have us on their shopping list.
Among the events that Nissan took part in this year in the region were the Dubai International Baja and the Clean Air Forum in Abu Dhabi, as well as a partnership with the UEFA Champions League and a number of other promotional events.
In the near-term future, Schmitz said Nissan believes that the overall market in the Gulf and wider Middle East will remain flat, overall.
“There might be some countries which have slight increases of total industry volume, and some even a bit below the last  level, but if you level that out, we believe that will be more or less flat in that region,” he said. “Obviously, our ambition is to grow share. To what extent only time will tell.”
Among the strategies that Nissan Middle East will implement in 2018, Schmitz said, are improved dealership facilities, adding models to key market segments, and focusing on Nissan’s Intelligent Mobility strategy by working to familiarise consumers with smart technologies including electric vehicles and autonomous driving.
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