Nissan is committing millions to electric versions of its top crossovers, the Juke and Qashqai

Nissan is committing millions to electric versions of its top crossovers, the Juke and Qashqai

Nissan is said to be planning to allocate hundreds of millions of pounds to a project to produce electric versions of its Juke and Qashqai, two of the company’s best-selling crossovers, which are manufactured at its Sunderland plant in the UK.

Electrek reported that Nissan intends to invest “hundreds of millions of pounds” and possibly more than £1 billion ($1.25 billion) in the project, which will be announced on Friday, November 24.

(Photo: Yuichi Yamazaki/AFP via Getty Images)

According to the Financial Times, the company’s choice to produce electric variants of its existing Qashqai and Juke models has been backed by financial support from the British government worth hundreds of millions of pounds, although Sky News reported that it is unclear whether taxpayers will provide any cash. . sincere.

The official announcement of the project will reportedly be led by Nissan CEO Makoto Uchida on Friday, where Prime Minister Rishi Sunak will be in attendance.

According to Electrek, the Nissan Qashqai was the best-selling car in the UK last year, becoming the first British-made model to do so in 24 years. Last year, nearly 42,700 examples were delivered in the UK.

Read also: Nissan is recycling old batteries from paper electric cars to create portable power supplies

Electric vehicle expansions in the UK

Nissan’s unveiling of the two models is in line with the company’s goal of selling fully electric cars in Europe by the end of the decade, as Nissan previously announced that all new Nissan models from now on will be fully electric in Europe.

Uchida said in September during a visit to the UK that the world “needs to transition” away from combustion engines following the British government’s decision to postpone the phase-out of petrol car sales from 2030 to 2035.

Car manufacturers have already spent billions of dollars converting their models and supply lines to electric vehicles, according to a report by The Guardian.

Stellantis, the owner of Ford and Vauxhall, aspires to switch to fully electric cars in Europe by 2030, while Volvo intends to sell only electric cars globally by then. Traditional automakers are scrambling to catch up with electricians like Tesla.

While Toyota has yet to announce any new electric car models, the Japanese giant has reportedly teased several electric car designs, including a sports car, a pickup truck and a Land Cruiser.

Concerns about Nissan’s Sunderland plant

Nissan currently produces the Qashqai and Juke petrol models at its Sunderland facility, and the decision to produce replacement electric vehicles there should remove any remaining uncertainty about the plant’s future.

In 2019, the company announced it would no longer produce the X-Trail in the Northeast, adding to the industry’s current pessimism.

Three years later, it announced the closure of a section of its huge facility in Sunderland dedicated to the production of cylinder heads for Renault’s combustion engines.

Nissan’s Sunderland facility employs 6,000 people, representing the vast majority of the company’s British workforce, and on site, it already manufactures the short-range electric Leaf model.

Workers inside the Sunderland facility are now said to be essential due to their ability to produce a staggering number of Nissan vehicles each year, according to a Topgear report.

The Sunderland plant is said to be the center of Nissan EV36Zero, the company’s initiative towards an electric and zero-emission vehicle ecosystem.

Nissan and battery supplier AESC have announced a £1bn investment in the Sunderland plant in 2021.

Related articles: Kia America unveils new EV models at the 2023 Los Angeles Auto Show

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