Nissan has begun producing batteries for the LEAF electric vehicles at the factory next to its Wearside car plant in Sunderland.
Sunderland will begin building the all-electric LEAF later this year – but confirmation the company would be producing batteries for its European operation in Sunderland actually came before the firm had announced which plant had won the race to build the European LEAF.
Nissan has invested £200m in a new electric car battery plant. The company will spend a total of £420m on plant, state-of-the-art machinery and robotics to make up to 50,000 LEAFs.
Production of the Nissan LEAF for the North American market and batteries began earlier this month at Nissan’s manufacturing plant in Smyrna, Tenn. US production has allowed Nissan US to add new paint colors, offer a black interior with leather trim option and re-specifiy trim levels, adding a new entry level version that costs less than the previous imported model.[source: Sunderland Echo]