Newport Convertible Engineering is an original design manufacturer(ODM) that designs and engineers authentic convertible tops on all brands of automobiles. NCE has recieved world wide recognition for their original convertible designs, especially on Nissan convertibles.
Nissan Motor Company Ltd (Japanese: 日産自動車株式会社 Nissan Jidōsha Kabushiki-gaisha?) (TYO: 7201), usually shortened toNissan ( /ˈniːsɑːn/ or UK /ˈnɪsæn/; Japanese: [nisːaɴ]), is a multinational automaker headquartered in Japan. It was a core member of the Nissan Group, but has become more independent after its restructuring under Carlos Ghosn (CEO).
Nissan was the sixth largest automaker in the world behind Toyota, General Motors, Volkswagen AG, Hyundai Motor Group, and Fordin 2010. It formerly marketed vehicles under the “Datsun” brand name. As of 2011, the company’s global headquarters is located inNishi-ku, Yokohama. In 1999, Nissan entered a two way alliance with Renault S.A. of France, which owns 43.4% of Nissan while Nissan holds 15% of Renault shares, as of 2008. Along with its normal range of models, Nissan also produces a range of luxury models branded as Infiniti.
Masujiro Hashimoto founded The Kwaishinsha Motor Car Works in 1911. In 1914, the company produced its first car, called DAT.
It was renamed to Kwaishinsha Motorcar Co., Ltd. in 1918, and again to DAT Motorcar Co. in 1925. DAT Motors built trucks in addition to the DAT and Datsun passenger cars. The vast majority of its output were trucks, due to an almost non-existent consumer market for passenger cars at the time. Beginning in 1918, the first DAT trucks were produced for the military market. It was the low demand of the military market in the 1920s that forced DAT to merge in 1926 with Japan’s second most successful truck maker, Jitsuyo Motors.
In 1926 the Tokyo-based DAT Motors merged with the Osaka-based Jitsuyo Jidosha Co., Ltd. (実用自動車製造株式会社 Jitsuyō Jidōsha Seizō Kabushiki-Gaisha?) a.k.a. Jitsuyo Motors (established 1919, as a Kubota subsidiary) to become DAT Automobile Manufacturing Co., Ltd. (ダット自動車製造株式会社 Datto Jidōsha Seizō Kabushiki-Gaisha?) in Osaka until 1932. (Jitsuyo Jidosha began producing a three-wheeled vehicle with an enclosed cab called the Gorham in 1920, and the following year produced a four-wheeled version. From 1923 to 1925, the company produced light cars and trucks under the name of Lila.)
In 1931, DAT came out with a new smaller car, the first “Datson”, meaning “Son of DAT”. Later in 1933 after Nissan took control of DAT Motors, the last syllable of Datson was changed to “sun”, because “son” also means “loss” (損) in Japanese, hence the name “Datsun“(ダットサン Dattosan?).
In 1928, Yoshisuke Aikawa founded the holding company Nippon Sangyo (Japan Industries or Nippon Industries). “The name ‘Nissan’ originated during the 1930s as an abbreviation” used on the Tokyo stock market for Nippon Sangyo. This company was the famous Nissan “Zaibatsu” (combine) which included Tobata Casting and Hitachi. At this time Nissan controlled foundries and auto parts businesses, but Aikawa did not enter automobile manufacturing until 1933.
In 1930, Aikawa purchased controlling(?) shares in DAT Motors, and then in 1933 it merged Tobata Casting’s automobile parts department with DAT Motors. As Tobata Casting was a Nissan company, this was the beginning of Nissan’s automobile manufacturing.
In 1934, Aikawa “separated the expanded automobile parts division of Tobata Casting and incorporated it as a new subsidiary, which he named Nissan Motor (Nissan)”. Nissan Motor Co., Ltd. (日産自動車 Nissan Jidōsha?). The shareholders of the new company however were not enthusiastic about the prospects of the automobile in Japan, so Aikawa bought out all the Tobata Casting shareholders (using capital from Nippon Industries) in June, 1934. At this time Nissan Motor effectively became owned by Nippon Sangyo and Hitachi.
Nissan built trucks, airplanes, and engines for the Japanese military. The company’s main plant was moved to China after land there was captured by Japan. The plant made machinery for the Japanese war effort until it was captured by American and Russian forces. From 1947 to 1948 the company was called Nissan Heavy Industries Corp.
Although it had always been Aikawa’s intention to use cutting-edge auto making technology from America, it was Gorham that carried out the plan. All the machinery, vehicle designs and engine designs originally came out of the United States. Much of the tooling came from the Graham factory and Nissan had a Graham license under which trucks were made. The machinery was imported into Japan by Mitsubishi on behalf of Nissan, which went into the first Yokohama factory to produce cars.
In early 1950s, Nissan partnered with an established European company to gain access to up-to-date automobile and engine designs. Nissan chose Austin of the United Kingdom, which later became the British Motor Corporation by its merger with Morris et al. Nissan began building Austin 7s in 1930, though the legitimacy of their license at that time is debated. After the success of Nissan, Hino and Isuzu followed to partner with Renault and Hillman respectively.
In 1952 Nissan Motor Company of Japan entered into a legal agreement with Austin, for Nissan to assemble 2,000 Austins from imported partially assembled sets and sell them in Japan under the Austin trademark. The agreement called for Nissan to make all Austin parts locally within three years, a goal Nissan met. Nissan produced and marketed Austins for seven years. The agreement also gave Nissan rights to use Austin patents, which Nissan used in developing its own engines for its Datsun line of cars. In 1953 British-built Austins were assembled and sold, but by 1955, the Austin A50 – completely built by Nissan and featuring a slightly larger body with new 1489 cc engine—was on the market in Japan. Nissan produced 20,855 Austins from 1953–1959.
Nissan leveraged the Austin patents to further develop their own modern engine designs past what the Austin’s A- and B-family designs offered. The apex of the Austin-derived engines was the new design A series engine in 1967. Also in 1967 Nissan introduced its new highly advanced four cylinder overhead cam (OHC) Nissan L engine, which while similar to Mercedes-Benz OHC designs was a totally new engine designed by Nissan. This engine powered the new Datsun 510, which gained Nissan respect in the worldwidesedan market. Then, in 1969 Nissan introduced the Datsun 240Z sports car which used a six-cylinder variation of the L series engine. The 240Z was an immediate sensation and lifted Nissan to world class status in the automobile market.
In 1966, Nissan merged with the Prince Motor Company, bringing more upmarket cars, including the Nissan Skyline and Nissan Gloria, into its selection. The Prince name was eventually abandoned, and successive Skylines and Glorias bore the Nissan name. “Prince,” was used at the Japanese Nissan dealership “Nissan Prince Shop” until 1999, when “Nissan Red Stage” replaced it. Nissan Red Stage itself has been replaced as of 2007. The vehicles that were the result of Prince manufacturing and development, such as the Gloria and the Skyline live on in the internationally established marque, Infiniti.
In the 1950s, Nissan decided to expand into worldwide markets. Nissan management realized their Datsun small car line would fill an unmet need in markets such as Australia and the world’s largest car market, the United States. They first showed cars at the 1959 Los Angeles Auto Show and sold a few that year in the United States. The company formed a U.S. subsidiary, Nissan Motor Corporation U.S.A., in 1959, headed by Yutaka Katayama. Nissan continued to improve their sedans with the latest technological advancements and chic Italianate styling in sporty cars such as theDatsun Fairlady roadsters, the race-winning 411 series, the Datsun 510 and the world-class Datsun 240Z, and by 1970, they had become one of the world’s largest exporters of automobiles.
In the wake of the 1973 oil crisis, consumers worldwide (especially in the lucrative U.S. market) began turning in rapidly increasing numbers to high-quality small economy cars. To meet the growing demand, the company built new factories in Mexico, Australia, Taiwan and South Africa.
Nissan’s initial assembly plant, in Smyrna, Tennessee, at first built only trucks such as the 720and Hardbody, but has since expanded to produce several car and SUV lines, including the Altima, Maxima, Xterra and Pathfinder. An engine plant in Decherd, Tennessee followed, and most recently a second assembly plant inCanton, Mississippi.
In 1998 Nissan announced that it was selling one of its headquarter buildings to the Mori Group for $107.8 million.
In order to overcome export tariffs and delivery costs to its European customers, Nissan contemplated establishing a plant in Europe. After an extensive review, Sunderland in the north east of England was chosen for the local availability of a highly skilled workforce and its position near major ports. The plant was completed in 1986 as the subsidiary Nissan Motor Manufacturing (UK) Ltd. By 2007, it was producing 400,000 vehicles per year, landing it the highly coveted title of the most productive plant in Europe.
Financial difficulties (approaching billions) in Australia in the late 1980s caused Nissan to cease production there. Due to the “Button Plan” the Australian operation was unique as the Nissan products were also rebranded both by General Motors Holden: Pulsar as the Holden Astra), and Ford: Bluebird as the Ford Corsair).
In 2001 established a manufacturing plant in Brazil, in 2005, Nissan setup operations in India, through its subsidiary Nissan Motor India Pvt. Ltd. With its global alliance partner,Renault, Nissan is investing $920 million to set up a manufacturing facility in Chennai to cater to the Indian market as well as a base for exports of small cars to Europe.
Nissan sold nearly 520,000 new vehicles in China in 2009 in joint venture with Dongfeng Motor, and aims for 1 million in 3 or 4 years. To meet that target, Dongfeng-Nissan is expanding its production base in Guangzhou, which would become Nissan’s largest factory around the globe in terms of production capacity upon completion.
From 1993 to 2002, Nissan partnered with Ford to market the Mercury Villager and the Nissan Quest. The two minivans were manufactured with all the same parts and were virtually identical aside from several cosmetic differences. In 2002, Ford discontinued the Villager to make room for its Freestar and Monterey. Nissan brought out a new version of the Questin 2004, which was designed in-house and no longer bore any relation to Ford’s models. Twenty years after the Quest joint venture, Nissan would be Ford’s rival to to supply taxis forNew York City. The Nissan NV200 was chosen over the Ford Transit Connect.
In 1992, Nissan relaunched its Terrano four-wheel drive, which was cosmetically and mechanically identical to the Ford Maverick. Both cars were built in Spain. Although the Maverick was discontinued in 1998 due to disappointing sales, the Nissan Terrano was a strong seller and remained in production until 2005, when it was replaced by the Nissan Pathfinder.
The Nissan Titan was introduced in 2004, as a full-size pickup truck produced for the North American market, the truck shares the stretched Nissan F-Alpha platform with the Nissan Armada and Infiniti QX56 SUVs.
The Titan features a 32 valve 5.6 L VK56DE V8 engine which generates 317 hp, and is capable of towing approximately 9500 pounds. The Nissan Titan comes in four basic trim levels: XE, SE, Pro-4X, and LE; that for the 2011 it will be S, SV, PRO-4X and SL.The trim levels are combinations of the features offered on the truck. It was listed by Edmunds.com as the best full-size truck. The Titan was nominated for the North American Truck of the Year award for 2004.
Signed on March 27, 1999, the Renault-Nissan Alliance is the first of its kind involving a Japanese and French car manufacturer, each with its own distinct corporate culture and brand identity. The same year, Renault appointed its own Chief Operating Officer, Carlos Ghosn, as Chief Operating Officer of Nissan and took a 22.5% stake in Nissan Diesel. Later that year, Nissan fired its top Japanese executives.
The Renault-Nissan Alliance has evolved over years to Renault holding 44.3% of Nissan shares, while Nissan holds 15% of Renault shares which does not give Nissan a voting or board representation due to legal restriction in France.
Under CEO Ghosn’s “Nissan Revival Plan” (NRP), the company has rebounded in what many leading economists consider to be one of the most spectacular corporate turnarounds in history, catapulting Nissan to record profits and a dramatic revitalization of both its Nissan and Infiniti model line-ups. In 2001, the company initiated Nissan 180, capitalizing on the success of the NRP. The targets set with 180 were an additional sale of 1 million cars, achieving operating margins of 8%, and to have zero automotive debts. Ghosn has been recognized in Japan for the company’s turnaround in the midst of an ailing Japanese economy. Ghosn and the Nissan turnaround were featured in Japanese manga and popular culture. His achievements in revitalizing Nissan were noted by Japanese Government, which awarded him the Japan Medal with Blue Ribbon in 2004.
On April 7, 2010, Daimler AG exchanged a 3.9% share of its holdings for 3.9% from both Nissan and Renault. This triple alliance allows for the increased sharing of technology and development costs, encouraging global cooperation and mutual development. The alliance with Daimler is believed to have a focus on battery/electric technologies.
In December 1999, legal action was instituted by Nissan Motor seeking $10,000,000 in damages from Uzi Nissan, president of Nissan Computer. In December 2002, Uzi Nissan was handed an injunction restricting his use of the Nissan name and the domains Nissan.com and Nissan.net which he owns.
On February 5, 2008, Final Judgement was entered for the case, with Nissan Computer being awarded costs and neither party prevailing. Immediately following the ruling, Nissan Motor filed a trademark application for Computer Equipment in March 2008,viewed by some as an attempt to acquire the domain through UDRP, an arbitration panel proceeding which often finds in favor of trademark holders.
In 2010, Nissan announced that its hybrid technology is no longer based on Toyota’s.
On April 7, 2010, Daimler AG exchanged a 3.9% share of its holdings for 3.9% from both Nissan and Renault. This triple alliance allows for the increased sharing of technology and development costs, encouraging global cooperation and mutual development.
The Nissan Note and Qashqai in the UK are both produced at their UK factory in Washington, Tyne & Wear. On January 9, 2009, it was announced that 1,200 jobs were to be cut at the Washington plant. The decision was blamed on economic reasons, including a downturn in the car selling market. Nissan’s senior vice-president for manufacturing in Europe, Trevor Mann, said the company was “right-sizing our operations to the market demand.”
Nissan also produces cars at its factory at Roslyn, near Pretoria, South Africa.
Nissan North America relocated its headquarters from Gardena, California to the Nashville, Tennessee area in July 2006. A new headquarters, Nissan Americas, was dedicated on July 22, 2008, in Cool Springs (Nashville, Tennessee). Approximately 1500 employees work in the facility.
On June 30, 2006, General Motors convened an emergency board meeting to discuss a proposal by shareholder Kirk Kerkorian to form an alliance between GM and Renault-Nissan. On October 4, 2006, however, GM and Nissan terminated talks because of the chasm between the two companies related to compensation to GM from Nissan.
The company’s head office moved from Tokyo back to Yokohama in August 2009.
On February 23, 2008 the Tamil Nadu state government (India) signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with auto manufacturing consortium, Mahindra-Renault- Nissan to set up a production unit at Oragadam in suburban Chennai.
The consortium comprising Indian auto major Mahindra and Mahindra, Renault (France) and Nissan (Japan) will begin with an initial investment of Rs4000 crore to manufacture nearly 50,000 tractors every year other than cars, utility vehicles and spare parts. The project is expected to increase Tamil Nadu’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by Rs18,000crore annually while providing 41,000 jobs.
On March 2, 2010 Nissan announced the recall of 540,000 vehicles to fix brake pedals and gas gauges. The brake pedal recall affects 179,000 vehicles in the US and about 26,000 in the Middle East, Canada, Russia and several other countries.
Certain 2008 to 2010 Nissan Titan pickups, Infiniti QX56 and Nissan Armada Sports Utility Vehicles, and some 2008 and 2009 Nissan Quest minivans are being recalled.
Nissan also announced the recall of several models of trucks and SUVs, including 2004–2006 Armadas and Titans, 2005–2006 Infiniti QX56s, and Frontiers, Pathfinders and Xterras made in August 2003 and June 2006. The recall was made in response to a risk that the electrical relays in the engine control modules for those vehicles may fail, possibly rendering the engine inoperable. The recall affects about 2,200,000 cars worldwide.
In February 2012, Nissan announced it would be recalling approximately 250,000 vehicles worldwide. Affected models include the Juke, Serena, Patrol, the China-made Tiida, Micra and Infiniti M and QX models.
In March 2012 Nissan announced the building of a new car, the Invitation, from mid-2013 at the Washington plant in the UK with the creation of 2000 jobs, 400 of them at Washington. On 01 June 2012, Nissan Motor India reported 98 per cent year-on-year rise in sales at 3,138 units in May as against 1,588 units sold in the year ago period.
Prior to announcements about the Nissan Leaf, Nissan Motor has had no special environmental record, at least as perceived relative to its competition. This may change in the future owing to a new emphasis on the development, production and marketing of electric automobiles. Nissan is planning to sell electric cars in the US coastal markets by December 2010, and within the US interior by June 2011. The company claims its EV model, the Nissan Leaf, has a maximum speed of 90 mph (140 km/h) and can go 100 miles per charge. It is projected to take eight hours to charge the car fully. Nissan’s car uses a large-capacity laminated lithium ion rechargeable battery. The vehicle is intended for short distances, and is not meant for replacing traditional cars for long trips. As with other electric cars these products from Nissan won’t emit pollutants from their exhaust. Any pollution involved in their operation would come from the production of the electricity needed to charge the car, depending on the type of power generation facility. Nissan has chosen to develop 100 percent electric cars rather than biofuel or ethanol running cars based upon cost analysis. On May 12, 2009, Nissan announced the company will produce EVs at its Oppama plant from fall 2010 with capacity of 50,000 units a year. Batteries for EVs will be supplied by Automotive Energy Supply Corporation, a joint-venture between Nissan (51%), NEC Corporation (42%) and NEC Energy Devices, Ltd. (7%). In July 2011, the solar charging port of Nissan – construction on a 30-car solar charging station outside of the future Smyrna Vehicle Assembly Plant in Tennessee – is expected to be completed. And it will use renewable energy to charge the Nissan Leafs that will be produced there in 2012.
Presidents and Chief Executive Officers of Nissan:
Nissan has produced an extensive range of mainstream cars and trucks, initially for domestic consumption but exported around the world since the 1950s. There was a major strike in 1953.
It also produced several memorable sports cars, including the Datsun Fairlady 1500, 1600 and 2000 Roadsters, the Z-car, an affordable sports car originally introduced in 1969; and the GT-R, a powerful all-wheel-drive sports coupe.
Nissan also sells a small range of kei cars, mainly as a joint venture with other Japanese manufacturers like Suzuki or Mitsubishi. Nissan does not develop these cars. Nissan also has shared model development of Japanese domestic cars with other manufacturers, particularly Mazda, Subaru, Suzuki and Isuzu.
In China, Nissan produces cars in association with the Dongfeng Motor Group including the 2006 Nissan Livina Geniss. This is the first in the range of a new worldwide family of medium sized cars and is to make its world debut at the Guangzhou International Motor Show.
In 2010, Nissan created another tuning division,IPL, this time for their premium/luxury brand Infiniti.
As of 2007 in Japan, Nissan sells its products at an internationally recognized “Nissan” signage, using a chrome circle with “Nissan” across the front. Previously, Nissan used two dealership names called Nissan Blue Stage, Nissan Red Stage, and Japanese: Nissan Red and Blue Stage, established in 1999. Before that, Nissan Red Stage was the result of combining an older sales channel of dealerships under the names “Nissan Prince Shop” (日産・プリンス店), established in 1966 after the merger of Prince Motors by Nissan that sold theNissan Skyline, “Nissan Satio Shop” (日産・サティオ店), that sold cars developed from the Nissan Sunny at its introduction in 1966, and “Nissan Cherry Shop” (日産・チェリー店), cars associated with the Nissan Cherry and established in 1970. Nissan Blue Stage was the result of combining older sales channels, called “Nissan Bluebird Shop”, or “Nissan Exhibition” (日産店), selling cars associated with theNissan Bluebird in 1959, and “Nissan Motor Shop” (日産・モーター店), cars associated with the Nissan Laurel starting in 1968. In 1970, Nissan also set up a separate sales chain that sold used cars including auctions, called Japanese: Nissan U-Cars, which they still maintain.
Nissan Fairlady Z, Nissan Serena, Nissan Cedric, Nissan R’nessa, Nissan Cima, Nissan Liberty, Nissan Cefiro, Nissan Laurel, Nissan President, Nissan Bluebird, Nissan Primera,Nissan Pulsar, Nissan Presea, Nissan Terrano, Nissan Stagea, Nissan Leopard, Nissan Avenir, Nissan Truck, Nissan Hypermini, Nissan Caravan.
Nissan Presage, Nissan X-Trail. Nissan Teana, Nissan Bluebird Sylphy, Nissan Crew, Nissan Skyline, Nissan Civilian, Nissan Silvia, Nissan Tino, Nissan Bassara, Nissan Gloria,Nissan Pulsar, Nissan Sunny, Nissan Rasheen, Nissan Primera, Nissan Mistral, Nissan Presea, Nissan Stagea, Nissan Advan, Nissan Largo, Nissan Vanette, Nissan Clipper,Nissan Homy, Nissan Elgrand, Nissan Safari, Nissan Wingroad, Nissan Atlas.
Cima, Gloria, Skyline, Primera, Auster, Pulsar, Langley, Volkswagen Santana, Volkswagen Passat, 180SX, Safari, Mistral, Elgrand, Homy, Bassara, Largo, Serena, Stagea, Primera wagon, Avenir, Wingroad, Expert, AD van, Vanette, Clipper, Atlas, Homer (cab over truck), Cherry, Sunny, Cherry Vanette,
Liberta Villa, Violet, Bluebird, Leopard, Maxima, Fairlady Z, Terrano, Avenir, Cefiro, Laurel, Laurel Spirit, Cedric, President,
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Nissan Motor Co. has nearly completed development of a lithium-ion battery using a lithium nickel manganese cobalt oxide cathode (NMC). The new system, which will reportedly offer almost double the capacity of Nissan/AESC’s current manganese spinel cell.
The new Nissan Leaf is expected to be marketed in North America, Europe, and Japan, beginning in late 2010. Nissan has announced it will manufacture the new Leaf compact electric car at its Washington plant in the UK. The annual production capacity will be 50,000 vehicles at Washington.
Nissan has also had a number of ventures outside the automotive industry, most notably the Tu-Ka mobile phone service (est. 1994), which was sold to DDI and Japan Telecom (both now merged into KDDI Corporation) in 1999. Nissan also owns Nissan Marine, a joint venture with Tohatsu Corp that produces motors for boats and other maritime equipment.
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Data extracted from Nissan’s international corporate website.