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Sunderland tops productivity poll

Nissan's Sunderland plant is the most productive in Europe, almost 20% ahead of its competitors.

The number of vehicles per employee rolled off the production line went up by 7% in 2000 on the previous year. Output increased by from 271,157 in 1999 to 327,701 in 2000. The ratio of 101 cars per worker is approaching the European productivity record set at Sunderland in 1998.

The findings were made by World Markets Automotive in its annual European Automotive Productivity Index.

It concludes that the improvement in plant productivity was the result of slightly reducing the workforce, while adding a third model, the Almera.

Toyota Burnaston was the second most productive plant with an output of 86 cars per employee. Renault topped the manufacturer's league league with six out of the top 15 most productive plants surveyed.

Honda's Swindon plant slipped from number two in 1999 to number 26 in 2000. The company attributes this partly to disruption following the full model change of the Civic 5-door and the introduction of the CR-V.

MG Rover's Longbridge plant was 29th with 52 cars produced in 2000 per employee.

The top 10 European plants are:
Nissan Sunderland
Toyota Burnaston
Ford Saarlouis, Germany
GM Eisenach, Germany
Ford Valencia, Spain
GM Antwerp, Belgium
Renault Valladolid, Spain
Volkswagen Pampolona, Spain
Fiat Melfi, Italy
Renault Novo Mesto, Slovenia.

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