Nissan has confirmed wide-reaching plans to electrify its operations in Sunderland, UK with a £1bn commitment to producing EV batteries and an all-new electric car at the site.
The manufacturer's new 'EV36Zero' initiative is jointly funded by Nissan, its battery production partner Envision AESC and Sunderland City Council. It will, says the brand, bring together "electric vehicles, renewable energy and battery production, setting a blueprint for the future of the automotive industry".
The project represents around 6200 jobs at the site and across its supply chain, with 900 new roles created at Nissan and 750 at Envision. The firm's EV36Zero plans have been announced to coincide with the Sunderland factory's 35th anniversary.
Nissan recently outlined plans to expand its Sunderland battery production facility, run by engineering partner Envision, to supply larger power packs for the UK-built Leaf, in line with post-Brexit foreign trade rules. Now, an all-new facility will supply power packs for all Nissan EVs, as Nissan works to create "a world-first EV manufacturing ecosystem".
UK production of the new units will also make them cheaper, and as a result will make "EVs accessibly to a growing number of customers in the future", said Nissan.
The UK government's investment in the site is estimated, Tesla could be considering its own battery factory in the UK, although this possibility was weakened in 2019 when the firm opted to open a site near Berlin in Germany (which has lately been beset by permit delays and local opposition).