Nissan UK battery plant

Nissan invests in UK electric car battery manufacturing

Nissan has announced it will construct the next generation of electric car batteries at its manufacturing hub in Sunderland, UK.

The car maker is set to invest £26.5m in the production facility which it said would also safeguard 300 jobs in manufacturing, maintenance and engineering.

The lithium-ion battery plant in Sunderland currently stands as the largest of its type in Europe.

The company also teased a partnership with academic and technology experts in a ‘ground-breaking’ project that endeavours to develop the future generation of batteries.

The project is receiving £19.4m in funding supported with a £9.7m grant from the UK’s Advanced Propulsion Centre.

Nissan’s Leaf, its electric car brand, is set to get a new model with a 155 mile (250km) range which is set to go on sale across Europe this month.

Paul Willcox, chairman of Nissan Europe, said: “With 200,000 customers around the world already, the Nissan Leaf has transformed the performance and perception of electric vehicles and made Nissan the undisputed leader in EV technology.

“Today’s announcement reflects Nissan’s intention to remain EV leaders for many years to come, with our UK operations at the heart of our future innovations.”

The company first started producing electric vehicles in its Sunderland plant in 2013 with a £420m investment.

UK Business Secretary Sajid Javid said: “This investment from Nissan is a further vote of confidence in our thriving automotive sector.

“The UK is fast becoming a world leader in low carbon automotive technology and the government is backing the industry.”

Nissan recently announced that it will release 10 vehicles with autonomous drive technology in the next four years as part of its collaboration agreement with Renault.

Along with Nissan, the consortium members in the battery project are Hyperdrive Innovation, Warwick Manufacturing Group, University of Warwick, Newcastle University and Zero Carbon Futures. They will work together on key areas of battery development covering pilot projects, product diversification and process improvement.

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