Nissan Sunderland’s 25th anniversary marked by a record-breaking year

04 January 2012 #SMMT News

Staff at Nissan Sunderland capped the plant’s 25th anniversary year with a string of new UK car industry records. In 2011, the plant made a total of 480,485 vehicles, besting the 423,262 cars produced in 2010, which was the first time any UK car plant made more than 400,000 cars in one year.

Demand for the Qashqai and Juke models meant the plant exceeded the previous record in November 2011, itself an all-time record month with 46,606 vehicles rolling off the production line.

This new record reflects the first full calendar year in which there has been 24-hour production of the Qashqai and Qashqai+2, as well as the first full year of Juke production. The number of jobs at Nissan Sunderland Plant also reached an all-time high in 2011, with 5,462 people directly employed on site.

There will be more developments for the Sunderland facility in 2012, with the launch of Nissan’s first lithium-ion battery production facility outside Japan and preparation for the start of Nissan LEAF production in 2013.

Kevin Fitzpatrick, Nissan’s Vice President for Manufacturing in the UK, said, “Our 25th anniversary year will go down in UK car production history and all our staff can be proud of the many milestones we have passed.

“Our 26th year promises to be equally exciting, as we launch the new Battery Plant at Sunderland and prepare the plant for production of the 100% Nissan LEAF alongside the Qashqai, Juke and Note.”

Paul Everitt, SMMT Chief Executive, added, “Many congratulations to the Nissan team for achieving record-breaking production volumes. They demonstrate the strength of UK automotive manufacturing which continues to buck the economic trend, outperforming 2010 by an anticipated 6%.

“2011 saw the UK attract a remarkable level of investment with global vehicle manufacturers committing in excess of £4 billion to plants and facilities securing future model production and employment. Despite the uncertainty within the Euro-zone, there is real confidence in the future of UK manufacturing and it will make an increasing contribution to exports, economic growth and employment in the coming years.”

In June 2011, Carlos Ghosn, President and Chief Executive Officer of Nissan Motor Company, announced that workers in Britain will design, engineer and build the next version of the company’s Qashqai model.

Find out about other high-profile announcements from UK automotive companies regarding investment, expansion, new models and employment.

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