In a move to cut exposure to the high Japanese yen, Nissan Motor Co. will transfer production of its Rogue crossover from Japan to its Smyrna, Tenn., assembly plant.
Thereafter, the carmaker aims to build more than 100,000 Rogues annually at the Smyrna plant in 2013, which is the year scheduled for the vehicle’s redesign. Chairman of Nissan Americas, Carlos Tavares, recently revealed the plan before the Society of Automotive Analysts conference in Detroit.
He said that in North America, Nissan aims to cut its reliance on imported vehicles by half, to 15 percent in 2015 from 30 percent in 2010.
The company also plans to reduce the amount of vehicle content it sources out of Japan. In 2010, more than 30 percent of all the vehicles sold by Nissan and Infiniti dealers in the United States came from Japan.
In 2010, imports accounted for a third of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc.'s combined Toyota, Lexus and Scion brand sales.
Nissan also has a $1.8 billion project underway to build the electric Leaf sedan and its battery module at the Smyrna facility. Until that expansion is completed in late 2012, Nissan's U.S. dealers will continue to rely on Leafs imported from Japan. [via autonews - sub. required]