Nissan has decided to bet its electric future in the United Kingdom. The Japanese automaker announced a multi-million dollar investment for the installation of a new electric car production plant in Sunderland, England. There will also operate a battery factory that will have an initial capacity of 9 gigawatt-hours (GWh) per year.
The Asian Corporation will allocate 1 billion pounds sterling (1,160 million euros, approximately) to this project, focusing on a region where it has been present for several decades. At Sunderland, Nissan already makes the Leaf model, and this expansion promises to create more than 6,000 new jobs.
To tackle this new project in the UK, Nissan partnered with Envision Group, through AESC. Of the total amount to be spent on this initiative, £ 423 million (€ 491 million) will go towards the production of a new generation “fully electric crossover vehicle”.
“Designed for global markets, UK production will be exported to European markets traditionally served by Nissan’s Sunderland plant,” they said from the automaker. The new electric crossover will be manufactured on the Alliance CMF-EV platform, which is already used in other Nissan, Renault and Mitsubishi models. A production capacity of up to 100,000 units is expected.
While there are no details yet on Nissan’s new electric car, the company released a teaser image. What was indicated is that the production of the vehicle will not be limited to the new plant of the company in British territory.
Nissan’s ambitious UK plan goes hand in hand with a ‘gigafactory’
Nissan’s new electric car plant in Sunderland will be accompanied by a “gigafactory” for battery production. As we mentioned earlier, the initial capacity will be 9 GWh per year, but the Japanese company has ambitious plans to expand it in the future. Through Envision AESC, the goal will be to bring it to 25 GWh per year by 2030, with an extra investment of 1,800 million pounds sterling. But they recognize that the place has the potential to reach 35 GWh.
The new plant will increase the cost competitiveness of UK produced electric vehicle batteries, including through a new Gen5 battery cell with 30% higher energy density, which improves range and efficiency. […] This will make batteries cheaper and electric vehicles more accessible to a growing number of customers in the future.
Nissan COO Ashwani Gupta said the project represents a “renaissance” for the UK auto industry. In addition, for the Asian company this multi-million dollar investment implies adapting to current regulations, and those to come.
In the framework of Brexit, the United Kingdom and the European Union signed an agreement for the free trade of automobiles. According to ., the condition for it to be sustained is that at least 40% of the value of the car is produced in the EU or on British territory. And that requirement will increase to 55% from 2027 onwards. With its auto plant and its own “gigafactory”, Nissan aims to meet the requirements to maintain its presence in the block.