Detroit’s Big Three (and Toyota), be afraid, be very afraid.
That appears to be the message Nissan is sending with the announcement it will
develop a new V8 engine, displacing over 5 litres, for the new full-size pickup,
minivan and SUV models that will be produced in a brand-new assembly plant in
Canton, Mississippi, from 2003.
Japanese sources say that the first vehicles powered by the new engine, coded
ZH, will be minivans and that annual V8 engine production should be around 168,000
units. U.S. full-size vehicle production in Canton is expected to total around
250,000 a year.
Nissan is no stranger to V8s – they’re in the company’s Japan-only
President flagship and the Cima – exported as the Infiniti Q45.
But, so far, the company’s V8s have been no bigger than 4.5 litres.