Nissan axes UK SUV plan

Charlene Craig
February 5, 2019

"The letter, written in October 2016, shows Nissan and the UK Government's continued desire to support investment in the UK and maintain Sunderland as one of Nissan's manufacturing hubs in Europe", the company said on Monday.

He added, however, that the company had "full confidence" in the Sunderland workforce and that it would continue to invest in Juke and Qashqai production there.

The main production plant for the current X-Trail is in Japan, while Nissan's plant in Sunderland, northeast England, makes the smaller Qashqai SUV and other models.

While the control of emissions in the European Union is a key factor in Nissan retaining production of the X-Trail in Japan, the company has referred to "Brexit uncertainty" as a contributory reason for pulling its investment in Britain.

"Nissan has increased its investments in new powertrains and technology for its future European vehicles", the firm said. A spokesman said: "Nissan does not comment on rumour or speculation".

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"But we can not deny the inevitable role that Brexit plays here".

After the weekend's dire news from Nissan, she called again for a people's vote with the option to stay in the EU.

According to Sky News, Nissan's decision is not expected to have a major impact on jobs. The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders said last week that the industry was on "red alert" after investment and production plunged.

Production of diesel cars was down by 22% to 561,000 past year.

Progress toward a Brexit agreement has stalled in recent weeks because of deep political divisions in the United Kingdom.

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"The company has confirmed that no jobs will be lost".

"For those reasons the company has chose to optimise our investments and concentrate production in Kyushu, instead of adding another production site". JLR, Honda and BMW have all announced plans to idle their factories in the days after Britain is set to leave the European Union in hopes of avoiding potential chaos at the borders. Ford, Jaguar Land Rover and Honda have recently announced cuts.

Steve Turner, Unite's assistant general secretary for manufacturing, said: "It is beyond disappointing that our members are hearing about their futures and the holding back of planned investments in Sunderland through media reports and not directly from the company".

As Nissan make a U-turn and say sayonara to building the X-trail in Sunderland, the government is left deeply embarrassed.

The sprawling site near Sunderland of the giant Japanese auto manufacturer Nissan is a fine-tuned product of Britain's participation in the European Union.

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