Production has started on the new Primera at Nissan's Sunderland plant. The first car, a 'Techno' grey, left-hand drive, 4-door saloon destined for Italy, where the car goes on sale on March 1, 2002, rolled off the production line yesterday.
Preparations for the new car's production began two years ago. Since then, £215 million has been invested in new Primera, £104 million of that used to cover the cost of new facilities at the factory. This brings Nissan's total investment in the Sunderland plant to £1.8 billion.
Managing director of Nissan Motor Manufacturing (UK), John Cushnaghan, said: "This is an exciting time for Nissan, in less than six weeks we will be up to full production of the new Primera, which is a record for Nissan in Europe.
"The investment we have made in the new car has resulted in a product that will not only give our customers the reliability they expect from a Nissan, but also one of the most distinctive and technologically advanced D-sector cars on the road."
Since it replaced the Bluebird in 1990, more than 1,189,000 Primeras have been built at Sunderland. Exports of the new car are expected to be around 80% of the model's annual production (120,000 units) with the main markets being in eastern and western Europe. (December 18, 2001)