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New Nissan hatchback to be produced at Sunderland plant

Nissan has revealed that its all-new compact model – which debuted at the Geneva Motor Show this week – will be produced at the company’s Sunderland, UK, manufacturing plant next year.

Called Invitation, the new hatchback will be built alongside the popular Juke crossover and will compete within the mainstream B-segment.

The announcement has been welcomed by the UK government, with the new model expected to create around 2,000 new posts at Nissan and amongst its UK supplier base. Automotive analysts say securing the Invitation contract is a massive boost for the Sunderland plant, which last year failed to win the production program for new Micra, but won responsibility to roll out the Leaf EV.

In addition to vehicle assembly – Sunderland will carry out axle production, cylinder head casting, camshaft machining and engine assembly, all of which represents an overall investment of just over US$196 million by Nissan in the UK. The project is also supported by a US$14.6m investment grant offer from the UK Government's Regional Growth Fund.

Trevor Mann, Nissan senior vice president for manufacturing in Europe, said: “This plant has a 20-year heritage in producing successful compact cars stretching back to the first Micra rolling off the line in 1992.

“I’m delighted that Sunderland has secured what will be another very important model for Nissan in Europe. It is a testament to the workforce, the ongoing support from the UK Government and all of our regional partners and suppliers.

“The additional volume will maintain Sunderland as the country’s largest car plant and we expect and look forward to a very busy future.”

8 March 2012


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