Nissan Closes Vehicle Plant in China

REUTERS/David Dee Delgado
A Nissan logo is seen at the New York International Auto Show Press Preview, in Manhattan, New York City, U.S., March 27, 2024.

BEIJING (Jiji Press) — Nissan Motor Co. has closed a passenger car plant in Changzhou, China, in an effort to cut its production capacity in the country to rebuild its operations there, according to informed sources.

The closure on Friday came amid the rapid spread of electric vehicles in China, which has led to serious sales slumps for Japanese automakers, known for their strength in gasoline vehicles.

The Changzhou plant was a comparatively new factory, which started operating in November 2020. It was operated by a joint venture between Nissan and state-owned Chinese automaker Dongfeng Motor.

According to Nissan, the plant manufactured approximately 130,000 vehicles annually, representing about 10% of the automaker’s total production in China. Nissan plans to continue the production of an SUV model that had been assembled at the Changzhou plant at a separate factory, the sources said.

In 2023, Nissan saw its new car sales in China drop 16.1% from the previous year. The downward trend persisted after the turn of the year, with sales in January-May 2024 falling 1.0% from a year earlier.

Other Japanese automakers are also facing challenges in the Chinese market. Mitsubishi Motors Corp. last year announced its withdrawal from vehicle production in China, while Toyota Motor Corp. and Honda Motor Co. have been forced to cut jobs and make production adjustments in the country.