Nis­san’s Juke, Kicks dom­i­nate Gulf’s small ur­ban cross­over seg­ment

Muscat Daily - - AUTO NEWS -

Since pi­o­neer­ing the seg­ment with the Mu­rano back in 2003 be­fore fol­low­ing up with the XTrail, Qashqai and Juke, Nis­san has dom­i­nated the global mar­ket in cross­over ve­hi­cles. That dom­i­nance has been un­der­scored in the Mid­dle East with Nis­san cap­tur­ing al­most 60 per cent of small ur­ban cross­over sales in the re­gion. The Juke and newly launched Kicks mod­els are vy­ing for the top spot in dif­fer­ent mar­kets.

Sales fig­ures for the year to date show that Nis­san has cap­tured 59.7 per cent of the B-seg­ment (small car) ur­ban cross­over mar­ket with the Juke ac­count­ing for 44.2 per cent of that share and the re­cently in­tro­duced Kicks tak­ing al­ready tak­ing a healthy 15.5 per cent.

The Kicks has proved an in­stant hit in Gulf mar­kets. Aimed squarely at ur­ban driv­ing en­vi­ron­ments, it com­bines a ro­bust ex­te­rior and el­e­vated driv­ing po­si­tion with com­pact di­men­sions for an ag­ile per­for­mance and ma­noeu­vra­bil­ity. The body features an ad­vanced aero­dy­namic de­sign, which op­ti­mises fuel con­sump­tion and min­imises noise. Kicks is also one of the first Nis­san mod­els to re­alise the con­cept of In­tel­li­gent Mo­bil­ity, ini­tially pre­sented at the Geneva Auto Show in 2016.

In­tel­li­gent Mo­bil­ity uses smart, rel­e­vant tech­nol­ogy to make the driver’s life eas­ier while also mak­ing ad­vances to­wards Nis­san’s long-term goal of zero emis­sion and zero fa­tal­ity mo­tor­ing. Its qual­i­ties have helped the new­comer to eclipse its Juke sta­ble­mate in the UAE, mak­ing Kicks the top seller in its seg­ment within the coun­try.

Kalyana Si­vagnanam, Nis­san’s re­gional vice pres­i­dent, Mar­ket­ing and Sales for the Africa, Mid­dle East and In­dia re­gion, said, “The car-buy­ing public here in the Mid­dle East is known to be a dis­cern­ing one and it has been heart­en­ing to see how they have em­braced Kicks and yet con­tinue to buy Juke in con­sid­er­able num­bers.

“We are es­pe­cially pleased to see how, from a stand­ing start, the Kicks has rapidly es­tab­lished it­self as a mar­ket leader. The all­new Nis­san Kicks has be­come a pop­u­lar choice among the com­pact cross­over seg­ment cus­tomers due to the ad­vanced In­tel­li­gent Mo­bil­ity tech­nol­ogy that it is packed with, a car which sits at the more com­fort­able end of the mar­ket.”

Among the high­lights of the Kicks’ tech­no­log­i­cal of­fer­ings are the Around View Mon­i­tor and Mov­ing Ob­ject De­tec­tion sys­tems, which use four in­te­grated cam­eras to show an over­all view of the car and warn the driver in case of any un­seen dan­gers.

The suite of tech­nol­ogy avail­able on Kicks also ex­tends to dy­namic in­no­va­tions to max­imise safety and com­fort. Among them are Chas­sis Dy­namic Con­trol, Ac­tive Trace Con­trol, Ac­tive Ride Con­trol and Ac­tive En­gine Brak­ing. Th­ese in­no­va­tions work dis­creetly to pro­vide key in­ter­ven­tions to en­sure that the Kicks re­mains sta­ble and com­fort­able for oc­cu­pants at all times. Kicks is the first ve­hi­cle in its seg­ment to of­fer th­ese in­no­va­tions.

Kicks’ rapid suc­cess is in many ways rem­i­nis­cent of Juke, which was first shown as the Nis­san Qazana con­cept car at the 2009 Geneva Mo­tor Show be­fore en­ter­ing pro­duc­tion and go­ing on sale to the public in 2010.

Juke’s bold, dy­namic styling in­stantly cap­tured the imag­i­na­tion of the mo­tor­ing press and public alike, en­sur­ing that the or­der books be­gan to fill up well be­fore the car be­gan to ap­pear, ini­tially on the roads of Ja­pan, Europe and North Amer­ica be­fore be­ing launched glob­ally.

It is no ex­ag­ger­a­tion to say that Juke com­pletely shook up the small car seg­ment back then and left other man­u­fac­tur­ers scram­bling to catch up. Even now, seven years later, Juke’s styling which com­bines el­e­ments of SUV, sports car and hatch­back, still looks fresh and ex­cit­ing, while tech­no­log­i­cally, it re­mains a real tour de force.

Si­vagnanam added, “We are pleased to see a healthy ri­valry de­vel­op­ing be­tween Kicks and Juke in the ul­tra-com­pet­i­tive ur­ban cross­over B-seg­ment. While there is some over­lap in terms of pric­ing, the two mod­els are pitched at dif­fer­ent buy­ers, with Kicks be­ing favoured more by young pro­fes­sion­als and Juke ap­peal­ing to those with young fam­i­lies. Cus­tomers ap­pre­ci­ate how th­ese mod­els stylishly com­ple­ment an ur­ban life­style.”

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