Carlos Ghosn, President and CEO of Nissan Motor Company, today welcomed Tony Blair to Nissan’s plant in Sunderland, UK, to launch the production of the next generation Micra.
The new car will go on sale across Europe from the beginning of 2003. A total of 235 million pounds (370 million euros) has been invested in the plant, which employs around 4900 people.
Tony Blair said: "I am absolutely delighted to launch the production of the new Micra. Today’s event is the result of hard work by the great management and excellent workforce at Nissan’s Sunderland plant, the most productive in the EU, and is a testament to the people of the north east and the UK car industry."
Carlos Ghosn said: "Today marks an important milestone in NISSAN 180, our three year growth plan, as we launch the production of the new Micra. I am here today to pay tribute to the hard work of all the employees here in Sunderland, who have a key role to play in the achievement of Nissan’s growth targets in Europe."
John Cushnaghan, Managing Director of Nissan Motor Manufacturing (UK) Ltd added: "Today is the culmination of two years of hard work to successfully introduce the new Micra in Sunderland. It has been a great team effort involving our employees, suppliers, and all our other partners, with the full backing and support of the UK government."
The company is targeting average lifetime sales of over 160,000 Micras per year across Europe.