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Infiniti targets fleets with special Q50 saloon

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Fleet-specific versions of the most important European luxury model yet from Infiniti are being introduced as part of plans to quadruple the company’s share of the UK new car market.

Boasting comprehensive equipment levels, lead-in examples of the new Q50 range will use aggressive pricing to mount a strong showroom challenge to BMW and Audi rivals, Fleet News can reveal.

The first Infiniti to be powered by a Mercedes-Benz engine, the manual transmission 2.2-litre Q50 Executive will have an on-road price of £29,870 that includes a navigation system listed as a £1,920 option.

"It will also come with contract hire rates that undercut our competitors by significant amounts," said product manager Gert Van Avondt.

"At under £300 per month, the rates offer substantial savings over the 320dSE and Audi A4 S-line, our target cars, and we expect this deal to make an impact with the increasing number of business drivers who want to lower the cost of premium motoring."

Fitted with six-speed manual transmission, the plush Q50 blends 114g/km tailpipe emissions with 64.2mpg economy to be tax band C transport. Listed at £31,420, the seven-speed auto model steps up a band with 124g/km emissions and 58.9mpg economy.

Despite considerable success in US and Russia, Nissan’s premium brand has made slow progress in the UK since its launch in 2008 and achieved only 530 registrations last year.

"Our main priority has been to introduce cars in a staggered fashion as we develop the brand and our sales network," said Van Avondt.

“We are expecting the Executive versions to boost sales to around 2,000 next year and Infiniti will be more accessible to customers as we develop from our current level of eight centres to establish a presence in or near most UK cities by 2016."

Maurice Glover

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