Currently reading: Coronavirus 2020: Nissan suspends production at Sunderland plant
Facility becomes third factory in UK to close temporarily due to coronavirus outbreak

Nissan has suspended production at its factory in Sunderland due to the effects of the coronavirus outbreak.


Around 7000 workers are employed at the facility, which currently produces the Leaf, Nissan Qashqai and new Nissan Juke models. It is the third car factory faced with temporary closure in the UK, with the PSA Group announcing yesterday that it would close all its facilities, including Vauxhall’s Ellesmere Port and Luton plans.


In a statement, Nissan said: “The company is following all advice from national governments and has implemented a range of measures to ensure the welfare of employees and communities. Additionally, Nissan is ready to support any initiatives where its manufacturing and engineering expertise can be useful.


“In Nissan Sunderland Plant, vehicle production stopped earlier today (March 17th) and has now been suspended until the end of this week. We will continue to monitor the situation.”


Major manufacturers including Ford, Volkswagen, PSA and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles have all announced widespread shutdowns of factories across continental Europe in recent days, as the spread of Covid-19 on the Continent continues to accelerate.


Not all of those decisions currently affect UK plants; Ford’s continental Europe shutdown does not include its two engine plants in the UK, while Bentley’s Crewe facility continues with “stable production”.

Read more

Nissan gives Sunderland plant £400m boost to build new Qashqai​

Coronavirus: How it’s impacting the car world​

PSA Group closes European factories to prevent coronavirus spread​

James Attwood

James Attwood, digital editor
Title: Acting magazine editor

James is Autocar's acting magazine editor. Having served in that role since June 2023, he is in charge of the day-to-day running of the world's oldest car magazine, and regularly interviews some of the biggest names in the industry to secure news and features, such as his world exclusive look into production of Volkswagen currywurst. Really.

Before first joining Autocar in 2017, James spent more than a decade in motorsport journalist, working on Autosport,, F1 Racing and Motorsport News, covering everything from club rallying to top-level international events. He also spent 18 months running Move Electric, Haymarket's e-mobility title, where he developed knowledge of the e-bike and e-scooter markets. 

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