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Infiniti planning Merc-based coupe flagship | report

The once non-existent world of luxury four door coupes looks set to add yet another new entry, with Infiniti reportedly working on a new range-topping model to launch into a field already heavily populated by prestige brands. 

Speaking with industry journal Automotive News, Nissan's future product boss Andy Palmer confirmed that the brand is planning a new flagship model, which won’t be a conventional large luxury sedan like the previous Q45 models.  "We won't do a Merc S class or that type of car," Palmer said. "We have had that before. We want a flagship car that's appealing and different."

Sources suggest the model will build on the sleek profile of the 2009 Essence concept, with rear doors added to create a model akin to the Porsche Panamera.

The model would likely be based on a Mercedes Benz platform as part of Infiniti’s technology tie-up with the German brand, and sit above Infiniti’s range of luxury sedan, coupe, and SUV models.

Palmer confirmed that the model is yet to be signed off however. "The sales of (sedans) like the Q50 and SUVs like the QX60 will have to be going well and then I can go to our approval committee."

As such, the new model is not likely to appear before 2017, but could become an ideal hero for Infiniti’s plan to become a major global player in the luxury market before 2020.

This reporter is on Twitter: @Mal_Flynn