Reports from Infiniti confirm that there are no plans to produce either the rumored GT-R powered flagship sedan or the Essence concept car at this time.
There's no doubt that a full-size Infiniti flagship sedan, powered by the Nissan GT-R's 473-horsepower twin-turbo V6, would be an entertaining challenger to the Mercedes S-Class and BMW 7 Series. Unfortunately, with sales of full-size luxury cars down and corporate belt-tightening becoming a new way of life, such a car is unlikely to happen.
Rumors of an all-wheel drive Infiniti flagship to replace the almost-forgotten Q45 have been flying for a couple of years now, and the GT-R-powered Essence show car that debuted in Geneva helped to fuel them. More recently there was talk of such a car hitting the street by 2012. Edmunds' Inside Line reports that neither vehicle will get the green light. With market conditions faltering, Infiniti's dealers have told the parent company that a higher-volume vehicle will do more good than a high-profile, low-production flagship. This lends credence to reports that Infiniti is developing a new mid-size luxury sedan that'll meet BMW's 5 Series head-on.
Brian Carolin, Nissan's senior VP of sales and marketing, said, "It's fair to say that there's nothing in the product plan for an Infiniti flagship right now. It's just not a priority in today's climate."