Canton workers preparing for Murano production

Canton workers preparing for Murano production

US production of the Murano crossover will add 500 jobs at Nissan's Canton, Mississippi assembly plant, the automaker said on Thursday (29 May).

Production of the redesigned, 2015 model begins next autumn. It will be the first Murano produced in the United States and the eighth model assembled at Canton. The plant will become the main global source for Murano production, creating export opportunities to more than 100 markets. Previous generation Murano models were built primarily in Japan with some also assembled in China and Russia.

The new US Murano will be assembled on the same line as the Xterra, Frontier, Titan and Armada and is, Nissan said, "the most technically advanced vehicle ever built in Canton".

"Recruiting efforts and preparations for the start of Murano production this fall are under way and current employees are excited to add this vehicle to the list of outstanding cars and trucks built in Mississippi," said John Martin, senior vice president, manufacturing, supply chain management and purchasing for Nissan North America.

"The addition of Murano to our portfolio, coupled with the continued growth and success of the Canton plant, will move us even closer to our goal to build more than 85% of the vehicles we sell in the US right here in North America."

In the last decade, Canton has been transformed from a domestic supply plant to a global facility as Nissan has spent about US$2.6bn on the plant. With the addition of the 500 new jobs, the plant will grow to more than 6,000 manufacturing jobs for the first time in its almost 11-year history.

A new, on-site supplier park, currently under construction, is expected to be completed later this fall in conjunction with the start of Murano production.

Nissan assembly plants in Canton and Smyrna, Tennesee, and a powertrain plant in Decherd, also in Tennessee, have produced nearly 13m vehicles, 8m engines and created more than 15,000 US manufacturing jobs since Nissan built its first small pickup truck at Smyrna in 1983.

VIDEO: Canton workers talk about planned Murano production