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March 4, 2011

Nissan started the production of the model March in Mexico

  • It is the first new Nissan V-platform-based vehicle produced in the country
  • 70% of the production of this model will go to the exports market
  • $1.05 billion dollar investment for new projects, along with suppliers

Aguascalientes, Ags., March 4th, 2011 -Nissan started the production of its new worldwide compact vehicle based on the new V-platform at the Aguascalientes plant: the hatchback Nissan March. The ceremony was presided by Felipe Calderón Hinojosa, President of Mexico, who, after a tour inside the plant, gave the starting signal of March along with Carlos Lozano de la Torre, Governor of Aguascalientes, and Carlos Tavares, Nissan MC-A Chairman.

The event was also attended by Bruno Ferrari, Secretary of Economy; Lorena Martínez Rodríguez, Mayor of Aguascalientes; and senior officers of the company, such as José Muñoz, President of Nissan Mexicana; and Armando Ávila, Manufacturing Vice President.

The new Nissan March creates a new set of standards for the industry due to its advanced engineering applied on compact models with high equipment levels. It has been created and built on the new Nissan V platform that was developed under a new and extensive production engineering process. The design of Nissan March was made in Japan, where it was also tested in order to adapt it to the different tastes and needs of the customers of 160 countries.

With the start of production of this vehicle in Aguascalientes, Mexico joins Thailand, India and China as the manufacturing sites for this model around the world. Nissan is considering the production of 60,000 vehicles of this model (known as Micra in other markets) per year in Aguascalientes, at a pace of one vehicle per minute. 30% of them will be commercialized in the domestic market, while the remaining 70% will be meant for the exports market in Latin America (Brazil, among other countries).

The Project for Mexico, that includes a sedan model based on the same platform and other new projects, implies an investment of $1.05 billion dollars along with suppliers for 2013, including improvements and refurbishing of the manufacturing plant. For the production of this vehicle, a deep localization of 80% has been considered, with the involvement of 25 additional suppliers, some of them newcomers in the country.

Among the characteristics of the vehicle we find its easy drive and agile performance, its excellent visibility, the best spin radius of the segment, of only 4.5 meters, and its practicality for parking, as well as new technologies that help to reduce CO2 emissions and to increase fuel performance. In addition, the integration of the V platform represents one of the main factors that contribute to improved safety against impacts. The sophisticated programmed deformation zones absorb the power of front impacts, while the reinforcement of the monohull assures the maintenance of the cabin's integrity.

"Mexico is a strategic place for Nissan Americas in the region. I am pleased to be here at the Aguascalientes plant, one of the plants with more efficiency in the world that is a benchmark for others, to start the production of this global Nissan model", as Carlos Tavares, MC-A Chairman, said. "The new V platform evokes versatility. It will fulfill the needs of a worldwide market that is in growth and that is looking for low property cost vehicles with low CO2 emissions, without limiting its status and functionality. We appreciate the support provided by the federal and state governments to create incentives for the investments that we make in Mexico."

"This is one more achievement of Nissan Mexicana in its 50th anniversary that we are celebrating with the launch of four models in the year; Nissan March is only the first one," as José Muñoz, President and General Director of Nissan Mexicana, stated. "The start of production of this model will enable us to make it roll on the roads of Mexico and of other countries. We want to continue in the customer choice by offering models, such as Nissan March, that are competitive, without leaving performance and the top quality Made in Nissan."

"Nissan plants in Mexico have always been distinguished for adding worldwide quality to the products it manufactures. This is due to the fact that the corporation deposits its trust to develop this project for the market of the region in our plant of Aguascalientes", as Armando Ávila, Manufacturing Vice President of Nissan Mexicana, stated. "Among the improvements that we have experienced we can highlight a deep localization allowing us to optimize manufacturing costs. This event assures the worldwide competitive position of production in Mexico."

In September 2010, Nissan announced in Japan that, six months after its launch, the new vehicle had surpassed the 54,000 orders of customers all over the world. The number of orders has been way higher than the expectations of the company since it exceeded the monthly and annual objectives of the region in a very short time.

In Thailand, country where the vehicle was launched for the first time in March last year, the vehicle reached 25,700 orders, 28% more than its annual objective of 20,000 units for the local market in six months. In Japan, two months after its launch, in July 2010, the orders reached 21,857 units in September, which represents more than five times the monthly target of 4,000 units. In India, the compact hatchback vehicle received approximately 4,000 orders as of the beginning of reservations in May 2010. And for China, sales orders have reached 3,000 units two weeks after the start of sales in August.

The corporation plans to reach one million units sold in the world by 2013 with three different models based on the new Nissan V platform.

About Nissan Mexicana

Nissan Mexicana, S.A. de C.V., is a subsidiary of Nissan Motor Co., Ltd. established in Mexico in 1961. It has corporate, marketing, distribution and design facilities in the cities of Aguascalientes, Mexico City, Cuernavaca and Toluca. In 2011, it celebrates 50 years of operations in Mexico and it currently employs more than 9,800 workers and employees. In 2010 it commercialized 189,518 vehicles in Mexico with a 23.1% market share (2.4 per cent more than in 2009) and it produced 506, 490 units for the domestic and exports markets. In 2011, up to Febuary, it has commercialized 32,660 vehicles with a 24% market share and it has produced 96,766 units. Nissan is focused on improving the environment under the Nissan Green Program 2010 that has the objective of reducing CO2 emissions and of increasing recycling. In addition, the ANDANAC / Nissan Foundation manages a Social Support fund for the construction of elementary schools: in eight years it has built and equipped 63 schools that have benefitted more than 30 thousand children of low income families in the country.

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