Nissan bets on Mexico, may set up third plant

Nissan Motor Co is planning to build its third plant in Mexico as part of its effort to increase its production to cater to the demand in North and South America, following its production upgrades in China, India and Russia, the Nikkei business daily yesterday reported, citing company sources.

The Japanese auto giant has two plants in Mexico which annually make about 600,000 units a year and the company is trying to locate the new plant near its existing plant in central Mexico, which will have three production lines, each capable of assembling 200,000 units a year.

The new plant is expected to produce compact cars designed for emerging countries and is likely to be an export base for the US.

Nissan's move is likely to nearly double its annual production in the Latin American country, the news agency said.

Nissan's move is aimed at ensuring supply for its customers in the US,  overtake Honda Motor Co in the US, and also fortify its market leadership in Mexico.

Nissan plans to start operations of the new plant at the end of 2013 and gradually increase output, positioning Mexico as its export base for the Americas.