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Nissan’s Infiniti says it’s working with Daimler on four-car platform

Bloomberg

Nissan Motor Co.’s luxury Infiniti brand is developing a new platform with Daimler AG that will spawn four models, including a crossover vehicle, the unit’s president said.

The first car using the architecture will reach sales rooms in 2017, Johan de Nysschen, the head of Infiniti, said in an interview in Detroit on Tuesday.

Daimler, the owner of the Mercedes-Benz luxury brand, said in September that it’s looking at expanding cooperation with Nissan and its French partner, Renault SA, to produce parts for compact vehicles. Mercedes licenses transmissions to Infiniti under a 2012 agreement based on the cooperation framework.

“Within the cooperation, we are open for new projects as long as all partners benefit from them,” said Thomas Froehlich, a spokesman at Stuttgart, Germany-based Daimler. “We are constantly in talks with each other about many topics. Projects will be communicated as soon as they are approved by all partners.”

Infiniti, which shifted its global headquarters to Hong Kong in 2012, will build its second North American plant in either the U.S. or Mexico to diversify production outside Japan, and will probably decide on the site this quarter, de Nysschen told journalists Monday at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

The carmaker is building a plant in Sunderland, England, to produce the new compact Q30.