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Nissan seeks to extend Sunderland car plant

LONDON: Japan’s Nissan Motor Co has applied for permission to extend its factory at Sunderland in north-east England, already Britain’s largest car making plant, where it plans to produce its premium brand Infiniti from 2015.

The carmaker has asked Sunderland city council for planning permission to extend the factory by around 25,000 square feet (2,300 square metres), allowing it to enlarge its body and paint shops, as well as trim, chassis and press facilities.

“If approved, these extensions will support the continued growth of Nissan’s UK operations, reflecting the success of models manufactured in the UK including Qashqai, Juke, Note and the 100 percent electric Nissan LEAF,” said a Nissan spokesman.

“The main extensions proposed are to body shop and the trim and chassis building and are required for new production facilities.”

The Sunderland plant, which made its first vehicle in 1986, produces around 500,000 vehicles annually.

Apart from the Infiniti brand, it is due to build new versions of the Qashqai and Note over the next three years.

Once production of the new models kicks off, capacity at the plant will “go beyond 550,000”, the spokesman said.


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