Infiniti to build premium hatch in the UK

Infiniti to be built in Sunderland
19 Dec, 2012 1:00am

Infiniti has announced that it will begin building its premium hatchback at Nissan's Sunderland plant in the UK from 2015

Infiniti will start producing its 1 Series-rivalling model at Nissan’s Sunderland plant from 2015. This announcement means that Nissan’s new Golf rival – which is slated for production in 2014 - will no longer be built at the plant.

Nevertheless, the move will mean the creastion of around 1,000 UK jobs – 280 at the factory and the rest in the supply chain – and represents a £250 million investment in the factory.

The new premium hatchback will be based on the same MFA platform as the new Mercedes A-Class and is expected to borrow engines from that car, too. It’ll take its styling cues from the 2011 Etherea concept and will be aiming to capture a slice of the popular premium hatch segment currently dominated by the BMW 1 Series, Audi A3 and Lexus CT200h.

The news follows Nissan's announcement that its Sunderland plant will have produced around 510,000 cars this year. That’s an industry record, with production covering the Qashqai, Juke, Qashqai+2 and Note.

The Nissan Leaf and next-generation Qashqai are also expected to be built in Sunderland.