May 13, 2022

Nissan ends production of Datsun-branded vehicles

Carlos Ghosn at Datsun Go launch in New Delhi, India, 2013. — Photo by Bertel Schmitt (CC BY-SA 3.0)

Japanese automaker Nissan is ending production of Datsun-branded vehicles, less than a decade after relaunching the popular economy car to appeal to cost-conscious customers in emerging markets, the company said on Monday.

“Nissan is focused on core models and segments that bring the most benefit to customers, dealer partners and the business,” it said in a statement.

“Production of Datsun redi-GO will cease at the Chennai plant,” he said, adding that sales of already built models would continue.

The factory in India was the last in operation for the brand, after the end of production in Indonesia and Russia.

The company said after-sales service and parts will remain available.

Nissan first killed off the Datsun brand in 1981, but it was revived in 2013 by then-CEO Carlos Ghosn.

Ghosn would then be arrested in Japan on allegations of financial misconduct, before jumping bail and fleeing to Lebanon where he remains an international fugitive.

Datsun’s second death reportedly follows disappointing sales and comes as Nissan tries to pull itself out of a years-long slump.

The Datsun first went on sale in 1931 and was sold in 190 countries.

Its revived version had a much smaller footprint, with more than 7,000 units sold last year, according to Nissan.