Infiniti may have once again put the stops on its plans for a small electric vehicle, if new reports out of the US are anything to go by.
The carmaker’s EV program, which had centered on the ‘LE’ concept revealed in 2012, has been an ‘on again, off again’ affair for the past few years.
The project appeared to have gained ground last year, however, when an Infiniti spokesperson confirmed with TMR that development of the LE was continuing.
But, this week, an interview with Infiniti Americas chief Michael Bartsch suggests the LE’s production future has been shelved once again - this time for good.
Speaking with USA Today this week, Bartsch said that rather than offer a niche EV, the company must focus on higher-volume segments.
"We have to be a little pragmatic," Bartsch told the website.
Infiniti is not alone in holding back on introducing a production electric vehicle. Among its premium rivals, only BMW has put an all-electric offering into full production for the global market.
Mercedes-Benz and Audi have both revealed electric and heavily electric-assisted models and technologies, but full production schedules are yet to be launched.
Likewise, Lexus appears in no rush to embrace the all-electric automobile, focusing for now on hybrids.
But, with industry upstart Tesla working hard to expand its range of electric vehicles - the Model X SUV is due this year and the Model 3 will follow - it is likely that ‘the establishment’ will rise to the challenge soon.
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