"This is the real thing," Nikon President Michio Kariya told a news conference, when asked how Nikon's cameras were different from Canon's new digital SLRs targeting the same mid- to high-end market.
Nikon held a 47.5 percent market share in Japan in January-June, beating Canon's 36.5 percent, Tokyo-based research firm BCN said. Nikon should be able to consistently hit at least 40 percent market share, Kariya said.
Nikon is pricing its D300 at around 230,000 yen ($1,980) with initial monthly production of 60,000 units. The D3, aimed at professionals, would sell for about 580,000 yen, with initial production of 8,000 a month.
Earlier this week, Canon announced the launch of its EOS 40D model from August 31, and the EOS-1Ds Mark III for professionals from late November, vowing to regain its lead over Nikon by year-end.
Nikon expects to ship a total 3.2 million digital SLRs in the year ending March 2009, up from 2.6 million this business year.