In the 1960s Nissan merged again, this time with the Prince Motor Company. This merger changed the direction of Nissan’s product line, enabling the auto manufacturer to focus on higher end luxury vehicles. In addition, the Datsun 510 was introduced into the American market and by 1970 the company had exported over 1 million vehicles.
By the 1980s Nissan had abandoned the Datsun moniker and began selling their vehicles under the Nissan marquee. In addition, Nissan opened a manufacturing plant on American soil (in Georgia) and began producing Nissan’s in American.
In the 1990s Nissan introduced a bevy of slick and sporty vehicles which helped increase the popularity of the brand. The Nissan 300ZX, the Sentra, and the Maxima were all high-selling and fun to drive vehicles. Unfortunately, by the turn of the millennium the company had lost of its personality and edge and sales were faltering.
In 1999 Nissan allied with Renault, increasing Nissan’s financial base. They redesigned the Sentra, Maxima, and introduced a new 350Z sports car and Armada SUV. These changes drastically helped sales, and Nissan rebounded quickly.
Today the company offers twenty-seven models for buyers to drool over, ranging from the sub-compact electric Leaf to the Nissan Titan pick-up, and everything in between. Since its redesign in 1999, the Nissan Altima has proven to be the breadwinner of the company. The dependable sedan leads the company in sales and remains, by far, the most popular model the company offers. The 2013 Altima is likely to continue this trend, offering the economic performance and reliability Nissan buyers have come to expect.