Infiniti is planning an overhaul of its distribution system in the United States over the next 18 months so its dealers could operate with smaller inventories while raising standards for them. The Infiniti envisions a national inventory system that operates on a 45-day vehicle supply. Infiniti President Johan de Nysschen told Bloomberg in an interview that they need to get rid of the idea that being below 90 days of supply is “underinventory,” adding that he plans to cut that figure to 45 days.
According to the Automotive News Data Center, Infiniti dealers had a 67-day supply of vehicles as of Sept. 1, 2013. According to de Nysschen, Infiniti will provide dealers with tools to help them keep a 45-day supply.
The tools will come in the form of new information technologies that the carmaker is developing. Infiniti wants dealers to be able to check plant schedules in Japan and Tennessee to determine what models are about to be built or are lying unsold on ships heading ports in US.
The carmaker also wants dealers to be able to swap with other dealers before their vehicles enter the country. The changes will commence in January 2014 with the introduction of a new dealer margin and bonus plan.
David Rosenberg, chairman of Infiniti's National Dealer Advisory Board, disclosed that the luxury carmaker and the board have agreed to reward dealers who maintain superior sales efficiency and customer satisfaction ratings as well as those who have high customer retention.
Dealers who have invested in an Infiniti designed store as well as those who maintain high residual values will also be rewarded. According to de Nysschen, dealer margins and bonuses will be set store by store. He said that they will set up a program wherein dealers earn their inventory allocations.