FRANKFURT -- Nissan Motor Co.'s Infiniti brand plans to build a compact car based on a small-car platform from Daimler AG's Mercedes-Benz, Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn said.
The new model will mark an expansion of the cooperation between Daimler and the Renault-Nissan alliance, Ghosn said at the Frankfurt auto show on Wednesday.
Nissan did not comment on reports that the car would be built in Europe where it will challenge the Audi A3 and BMW 1 series.
Nissan executive vice president Andy Palmer told Automotive News Europe that it is "not a sacred cow" that Infiniti cars should only be built in Japan, but would not comment on where the car will be built.
Infiniti needs a compact car in Europe to compete with entry-level models from Audi and BMW, Palmer told ANE in an interview at the auto show on Wednesday.
He said the Infiniti will launch in 2014 with gasoline and diesel engines, based largely on the Etherea concept that the brand unveiled at the Geneva auto show in March and is showing again here in Frankfurt.
The compact would likely eventually account for about 40 percent of Infiniti's European sales, Palmer said.