Nissan Europe sale boss Guillaume Cartier says he will not do "crazy things” to reach the automaker’s goal of passing Toyota to become Europe’s top-selling Asian brand by 2016. His aim is to remain profitable and to top Nissan’s nearest rivals – Toyota and Hyundai – by being Europe’s “most desirable Asian brand” in terms of products, in-car features and service. The Frenchman, who has been with Nissan since 1995, explained why he is bullish to Automotive News Europe Managing Editor Douglas A. Bolduc.
Nissan wants to be the top-selling Asian brand in Europe by 2016. As sales boss, how does this goal affect the way you operated on a daily basis?
I think we could reach the goal, but it’s not an obsession. I won’t do crazy things just to achieve that. It’s more about having a competitive target to chase. If I have to choose between being No. 1 and profit, I will choose profit. Ultimately, what we want is to be the most desirable Asian brand.
What does that mean?
If I speak to a customer, does he care if I’m No. 1 in terms of sales? No. But he cares if am customer centric. I want to be the most desirable Asian brand in terms of product, service and the features we offer. We want to offer innovation and excitement, and we do with our crossovers, with the Leaf and we will do this in the future with autonomous driving features.
Is Nissan profitable in Europe?
We don’t disclose region-by-region numbers but we are smiling.