Nissan has officially opened its new design studio in London. Nissan Design Europe will be home to around 50 international designers, modellers and support staff and will play a strategically important role in a creative network which comprises six design studios worldwide.

The West End London location in the rapidly developing area of the Paddington Basin was chosen because of its multi-cultural backdrop and the access it provides to important and influential sources in contemporary art, architecture, fashion and design movements.

The studio is housed in The Rotunda, a former British Rail maintenance depot built in the 1960s which had fallen into disrepair and been unused since the 1980s. The site was selected specifically for its spacious interior which allowed the building to be turned into into a tailor-made urban design space.

The Rotunda studio combines design resources previously located near Munich in Germany and Cranfield in the UK. Nissan Design Europe has increased its staff by 25%.

The studio features a purpose-built CAD (computer aided design) suite, a presentation room, a showroom, a number of model making machines and a 'chill out' zone for relaxation and the sharing of ideas. Other features include a special lighting system that recreates different types of daylight to assist designers and artists in their work.

Nissan employs over 12,000 people across its European operations which include design, research and development, manufacturing, sales, marketing and logistics.