Nissan has announced more details of its Indian small car project with alliance partner Renault.

It said on Saturday it would make the next generation Micra (March in Japan) model at its Orgadam plant and eventually export well over a third of the $US833m Renault Nissan Automotive India plant's 400,000-unit capacity.

"We will roll out the small car from our Chennai plant while the plant in Thailand is the mother unit for that model," RNAI managing director Shouhei Kimura told

Plant construction work was progressing well with stamping and paint shop foundations already laid while other excavation work continued.

An adjacent supplier park is planned for the Nissan-Renault factory, housing about 50 vendors including some overseas companies like Unipress Sheet Metal Press.

Nissan Motor India has agreed a vehicle distribution deal with Hover Automotive India and plans to have 55 dealers by 2012.

Commercial production is expected to start by 2010 and  Nissan plans to export 110,000 cars a year initially, primarily to Europe from 2011 through Ennore port.

Nissan Europe currently sources the Micra line from its Sunderland plant in the UK. Last June, the company said it would replace the Micra with a new compact vehicle - expected to be a new SUV - from 2010.

"We plan to increase exports to 180,000 units from India over a period of time," Nissan Motor corporate vice-president Toshifumi Hirai told

A memorandum of understanding (MOU) to this effect has been signed between Nissan Motors and Ennore Port, the report added.

Nissan sends engineering to India