Datsun South Africa has described recent reports that Nissan plans to scrap the budget brand as mere “speculation”, saying it plans to continue operating locally.
Speaking to CARmag.co.za at the local launch of new Go and Go+ CVT variants, Datsun SA marketing director Kabelo Rabotho suggested buyers should not be concerned.
“We’d like to assure our consumers out there that we’re expanding the range [to include CVT variants] because we believe in Datsun continuing in South Africa,” he said.
Rabotho went on to label reports of Datsun’s impending demise as “speculation”, adding neither Nissan nor Datsun had issued a “formal or any statement” on the rumours from a “global perspective”.
In October 2019, Reuters reported the Japanese firm would “likely” close down its Datsun arm as part of a wider campaign to increase global profits, despite the budget marque being revived as recently as 2013. The news agency furthermore suggested the automaker would cut certain “unprofitable” Nissan-badged vehicles and shut down some assembly lines, too.
In July 2019, Nissan confirmed plans to cut “roughly 12 500” jobs as it sought to reduce its global production capacity after its quarterly operating profit plunged 98,5 percent.