Japanese automaker Nissan announced plans Friday to add 810 jobs to its Tennessee factory to support a third shift as it expands local production of its core models.
Nissan said it aims to have 85 percent of all Nissan and Infiniti products that are sold in the United States produced in North America by 2015.
“The dedicated workforce in Tennessee continues to build high-quality vehicles that compete and win globally, and we’re committed to ensuring this doesn’t change,” Bill Krueger, vice chair of Nissan Americas, said in a statement.
Nissan’s plant in Smyrna, Tennessee, has an annual output capacity of 550,000 vehicles and began production in June 1983. It currently produces the Nissan Altima, Maxima, Pathfinder and Infiniti JX.
The plant will begin production of the all-electric Leaf and its batteries later this year and the next-generation Nissan Rogue in 2013.
With Friday’s announcement, Nissan has added more than 2,000 jobs at the facility since last year, expanding the workforce to more than 6,000 people.
“Nissan has been instrumental in putting Tennessee on the map in auto manufacturing,” Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam said.
“This announcement bolsters what has been a highly successful business story in our state.”
Nissan’s US sales were up 12 percent so far this year to 866,484 vehicles through the end of September.
[Image via Agence France-Presse]