In announcing the results of the fiscal year, which ended in March, Nissan did not disappoint the expectations of those who anticipated a major disaster. The figures advanced by the president and CEO of the Japanese manufacturer, Makoto Uchida, point to a net loss of 671 billion yen, about 5.65 billion euros, which is a record for the Japanese brand in the past 20 years. On the way, Nissan revealed the expected recovery plan, which involves cuts in production, investment and the closing of some factories, with the consequent dismissal of workers, although the number has not been advanced.
After surprising by the poor financial results, Nissan focused on the future and revealed what it intends to achieve in the next four years, to rebalance finances. The first step is to cut production volume by 20%, reducing it to just 5.4 million vehicles, a strategy different from that embraced by its competitors, who seek to maintain or even increase production and sales, thereby reducing the unit cost of vehicles.
The reduction in production volume and, by table, sales, forces Nissan to adapt its production apparatus. For now, the first victims are the three factories in Barcelona (one main and two satellites), where, among other models, the Nissan Navara pick-up, one of the most emblematic products of the Japanese manufacturer, as well as the “copies” were manufactured. Mercedes X-Class (which the German manufacturer had already announced it would discontinue) and Renault Alaskan.
In addition to the manufacturing facilities in Barcelona, the factory in Indonesia will also close, leaving to know what the future holds for the largest Nissan plant in Europe, in Sunderland, in the United Kingdom. With the foreseeable taxes on exports of vehicles produced in England to EU countries raising the costs of the models produced there, such as the Qashqai, Micra and Leaf, it is not evident that Nissan is not obliged to review its production apparatus European, so much so that it also announced its intention to use Renault plants in Europe to manufacture its models with shared platforms and mechanics.
The current range of 69 models will be reduced to 55, but 12 of them will be new and introduced in the next 18 months, with the Japanese manufacturer admitting that the set of vehicles sold in the USA is a bit old.
Despite Nissan's attempts to renegotiate a more balanced quota division with Renault, the French continue to hold 43% of the Japanese, against Nissan's 15% at Renault, but without voting rights, the consequence of which was the latter to save the bankruptcy first. Still, the Japanese manufacturer's poor results had a negative impact of 3.57 billion euros for the French brand.