By on November 5, 2012

Nissan’s Carlos Ghosn is eyeing another North American plant for Nissan, one that could be used to build both Nissan and Infiniti vehicles.

Infiniti, Ghosn said, is “too dependent on Japan”, though he stopped short of suggesting that the brand needs its own factory. A separate production line at a current factory would suffice, Ghosn told Automotive News. Currently, the only Infiniti model made in North America is the JX crossover, and Ghosn is adamant about introducing more North American production for the brand.

Ghosn sees a lack of local capacity as a major inhibitor of sales growth, and is hopeful that when Nissan’s Brazilian factory comes online in 2014, more capacity from their Mexican plant can be diverted to North America. Nissan is targeting 10 percent market share in the United States by 2017, and the timing of this achievement should be the impetus for the new plant.

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16 Comments on “Nissan Eyeing More North American Capacity...”

  • avatar

    Will it be able to make Mercedes vehicles too?

  • avatar

    In that case Mr. Ghosn for your consideration may I recommend Western Virginia. Close to major highway and railroad systems, educated population, no UAW. In the mountains, whats not to love?

    • 0 avatar
      Chicago Dude

      A large portion of America is close to major highways and railroad systems. An educated population might be a negative – they probably want to get paid too much. And the Japanese have demonstrated for many decades that you can build non-union factories in the backyard of the UAW without problems (not to mention that the UAW doesn’t seem to demand much in the way of compensation for new employees anyway – and everyone in a new factory is a new employee).

      So basically, you’re going to need a bit more to stand out from the other ~40 possible states that the factory may be built in.

    • 0 avatar

      To what part of Western Virginia are you referring?

      Volvo’s New River Valley plant in Dublin has ~1300 UAW employees. I knew an engineer who used to work there and he said that everyone at the facility with the exception of managers but including engineers and office staff was unionized in one union or another, and that fact was one of the catalysts of his departure from his ancestral home in southwest Virginia to a competitive truck maker in Texas.

      I’m in Richmond and went to college in Blacksburg and have family in southwest Virginia so I would love to see something good come to this state, but I can’t contort logic to convince myself there’s a rationale for locating automotive assembly here. Ford’s Norfolk F-series plant was shut down and it was located AT a major international shipping port and at the terminus of essentially every rail line in the state of Virginia, so if that can’t work nowhere else in the state is likely to work either.

      • 0 avatar

        Norfolk was a victim to high transportation costs and to the fact that when Ford was fishing for a location for the Escape, the plant turned it down. That is fact and that is why KCAP is still running.

      • 0 avatar
        el scotto

        @ cdotson. I had no idea Volvo had a plant in Dublin. C’ville here. @ tresmonos, thanks for the info; Escape driver here

  • avatar

    I was going to say “What about the Canton, MS-made QX56?”, but since its alignment with the global Nissan Patrol, the QX is now built in Yukuhashi.

  • avatar

    Why not use the Smyrna TN Leaf factory? There is certainly lots of unused capacity already in place.

  • avatar

    GUNG-HO. Movie. 1986. Michael Keaton after Mr. Mom but before Batman.

    Story of a Japanese car company buying a recently defunct American auto-plant, leading the American liason to mediate the clash of work attitudes between the foreign management and native labor. Enter Hunt Stevenson, Union Rep and all-American good-guy, who suddenly finds himself having to justify his own job; to choose between redundancy or the seemingly inhuman Japanese work ethic that the new owners have brought with them.

    Can’t wait to see the sequel straight to DVD.

  • avatar

    Ten bucks says it’s built in Mexico because Mexico has more free trade agreements with other countries that matter to car importers/exporters.

    don’t count on it being built in the USA, hence the “North American” and not USA comment from him.

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