Nissan painting a vision of a profitable future

A Qashqai on Line 1 at Nissan's Sunderland plant.
A Qashqai on Line 1 at Nissan's Sunderland plant.
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Nissan has unveiled plans for a massive new extension to its Sunderland plant.

The firm has submitted a planning application to Sunderland City Council for a new paint shop for Line 1.

The success of Nissan’s UK operations is reflected in the financial statements recently filed for the year ending March 31st 2015

Nissan spokesman

The move comes as the company reveals its UK operation saw profits jump by more than £31million in the last financial year.

Nissan Motor Manufacturing (UK) Ltd’s latest report to Companies House shows the firm – which includes the Sunderland plant, Cranford engineering centre and Paddington design studio – made a profit of £81,570,000 in the financial year to the end of March, up from £50,568,000 in the previous 12 months.

“The success of Nissan’s UK operations is reflected in the financial statements recently filed for the year ending March 31st 2015,” said a company spokesman.

“Production in our Sunderland plant remained at a historical high due to the success of Nissan’s industry-leading crossover and electric vehicles, with further investments made in plant extensions and new facilities ahead of the recent Infiniti Q30 launch.

“These financial statements also include our UK-based design and technical centres, which continue to play a key role in developing Nissan’s innovative and exciting model range for the European market.”

He confirmed the company was planning to extend the Sunderland plant.

“Nissan has applied for planning permission for a new paint facility at our manufacturing facility in Sunderland,” he said.

“This new building would replace existing paint facilities for the plant’s Line 1, where the Nissan Qashqai and all-electric Nissan LEAF are manufactured, reducing emissions and supporting Nissan’s continued leadership in both crossovers and electric vehicles.

The proposal is to develop a new paint shop building to the north of the current body and paint shop, on the north west corner of the overall site.

The proposed new section will comprise of a new painting process facility plus amenity and plant covering almost 28,000m2.

The paint shop will be a 216m long and 49.5m wide, three-story 3 storey building, linked to the existing paint shop via a bridge link at first floor level.

The multi-million pound development will require the loss of 237 car parking spaces will be lost, which will be replaced by 237 new spaces at the north western edge of the site.

Nissan has been developing the Sunderland site since 1984 and the factory now covers more than 356,000m2 of production space for its two production lines.

The plant recently started production of the new Q30, its first model for the firm’s exclusive Infiniti line.