Nissan Shifts Minivan Production To Japan

Company will move from factory in Canton, Mississippi to Japan.

Tokyo (AP)- Nissan Motor Co said Monday it will move production of its Quest minivan from the United States to a plant in Japan to improve efficiency and make room for new models at its American facility.

Production will be shifted from Nissan’s factory in Canton, Mississippi, to a plant in Kitakyushu, on Japan’s southernmost main island, Nissan spokeswoman Madoka Soma said. Timing of the shift has not yet been decided, she said.

The Tokyo-based automaker expects to change to reduce costs and open space for the production on new models in the United States that are expected to be introduced later this year, Soma said.

Quest production in Canton will be replaced by increased output of other models, and the change is not expected to affect the facility’s staffing, Soma said. Canton produced 323,000 vehicles last year, 35,800 of which were Quests.

The Kitakyushu factory produced 423,000 units last year.

Some Japanese carmakers are strengthening domestic operations to take advantage of advanced technologies at home. Honda Motor Co and Suzuki Motor Corp earlier this year decided to build new domestic plants for the first time in over 30 years.

The Nihon Keizai newspaper reported over the weekend that Nissan will also move production of its Infiniti QX56 sports utility vehicle to a factory in Japan from the Canton plant. Soma said the carmaker can’t yet confirm plans for that model.

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