JAPAN: Nissan to boost luxury car output at Tochigi plant by 40%
Nissan Motor plans to churn out about 40% more luxury vehicles at its factory in Tochigi Prefecture this fiscal year in anticipation of increased exports to North America.
The Tochigi plant is to produce some 170,000 vehicles this fiscal year, up from 120,000 in fiscal 2012, the Nikkei reported. The figure is said to be higher than the automaker's undisclosed plans for the site.
Nissan will not install additional equipment but will hire about 300 contract workers. And a production line will go from one shift to two next month.
Most of the added output is expected to consist of Infiniti models bound for North America. The Tochigi plant builds almost all Infinitis sold worldwide. The Q50 sedan is slated to debut in the US next month. Nissan is also expected to lift production of models such as its Z Coupe and GT-R sports cars.
At the beginning of the fiscal year, Nissan expected domestic production to decline 4.7% to 1.01m units. The automaker may upgrade the plan if the yen continues to slide and US sales remain strong.
New car sales in the US during the January-June period grew 7.7% year on year to 7.82m units, the highest first-half tally in six years, according to Autodata. Toyota aims to boost domestic output, including vehicles destined for North America. Fuji Heavy Industries has raised its domestic Subaru production plan for this fiscal year by more than 20,000 units to roughly 620,000 on the back of strong North American sales.