Already the UK’s biggest ever car plant, the new Note is set to boost production even further in Sunderland following a £125m investment by Nissan, secured for the UK with a £9.3m grant from the UK Government’s Regional Growth Fund.
The official start of production was marked at a ceremony on Line 2 at Sunderland Plant by John Martin, Nissan’s Senior Vice President for Manufacturing, Purchasing and Supply Chain Management in Europe, with the UK’s Minister of State for Business and Enterprise, Michael Fallon, in attendance.
The new Note’s design and technology has already caught the attention of customers, with Nissan dealers across Europe taking more than 14,000 pre-orders since the order books opened in July.
SVP Martin said: ‘The new Nissan Note is giving mainstream B-segment customers an unprecedented combination of design, technology and safety features which up to now have only been available in premium brands.
‘This investment is further endorsement of our Sunderland Plant, which is now an international benchmark for productivity and quality as a result of the hard work and consistently high performance by the management and workforce.
‘I would like to congratulate all of my colleagues at the plant and in our supply base on the launch of this new model, and once again thank the UK Government for their ongoing support for the automotive industry.’
In addition to vehicle assembly, the new Note has brought additional work to Nissan Sunderland Plant and its supply chain in axle production, cylinder head casting, camshaft machining and engine assembly.
In total, the upgraded Nissan Note is responsible for 2,000 new jobs in the UK automotive industry, including 400 staff at Nissan’s workforce at Sunderland, taking the number of British jobs supported by Nissan to more than 35,000.
Business Minister Michael Fallon said: ‘The investment by Nissan to make the Note at the world-class Sunderland plant has been achieved by Government and industry working together. It provides a very welcome boost to their exceptional workforce, the North East economy and the country.
‘Working in partnership with industry, our automotive industrial strategy sets out how we will secure the long term future of the sector as a UK success story by growing our share of the value chain and by getting ahead of the game in research and development on the vehicles of tomorrow.’
Designed to perfectly meet the demands of today’s B-segment customer, the new Nissan Note has benefited from extensive European development, tailored for European buyers. With engineering and development work for the new Note completed at the Nissan Technical Centre Europe (NTCE) in both the UK and Spain, the new Note has been designed to perfectly meet the demands of today’s small car customer.
The new Note also continues the Nissan tradition of bringing bold design and exciting new technologies to a new area of the market. Customers will benefit from a raft of innovative features relevant and useful in day to day driving.
The new Note heralds the beginning of Nissan’s busiest launch period in its history in Europe, supporting the company’s goal of becoming the number 1 Asian brand in Europe. With design, engineering and manufacturing operations all based within Europe, over 80 per cent of the Nissan cars sold in Europe are made in Europe.