At a meeting today with Prime Minister David Cameron, the president and chief executive officer of Nissan Motor Co., Carlos Ghosn, announced that workers in Britain will design, engineer and build the next version of the best-selling Nissan Qashqai.
The automaker will invest £192 million – $315m.
“The UK has been a cornerstone of Nissan manufacturing since 1986, with the Sunderland plant (in northeast England) setting important benchmarks for quality and efficiency in Europe and around the world,” Ghosn said.
“It’s the home of the Qashqai, one of Nissan’s biggest product successes, and, as Nissan’s leadership in sustainable transportation grows, the plant will become one of the pillars of our zero-emission manufacturing.”
The British government welcomed the announcement which fits with its strategy of trying to lift manufacturing as the country struggles to recover from the financial crisis and ensuing recession. Manufacturing makes up 13 percent of the economy.
The current Qashqai production line in Sunderland has been running around the clock for more than a year to meet global demand, producing an average of 1,200 Qashqais per day. No other car is made in such numbers in the UK, and Nissan is easily Britain’s biggest car manufacturer.
Each Qashqai produced has 3,779 parts, of which 83.6% come from one of 224 UK suppliers.
The plant also produces the Nissan Note mini-MPV and the Juke compact crossover.