Nissan to ‘cancel plans to manufacture X-Trail model in Sunderland’ according to reports

Nissan is to announce it is abandoning plans to produce its X-Trail car at its Sunderland plant, according to reports.

Sky News reported on Saturday that it has learned that the Japanese car-maker’s executives will confirm the move on Monday.

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Nissan said back in 2016 that the X-Trail SUV car would be produced on Wearside after receiving assurances from the Government.

The firm employs 7,000 people at its Sunderland factory and 8,000 overall in the UK. 

Last October its executives said it was one of a number of companies which have made major investments in the UK waiting for clarity on what future trading relationships will be like when Britain leaves the European Union. 

Nissan's Sunderland plant employs 7,000 people from across the region.

Nissan is part-owned by French manufacturer Renault, which had led to concerns that production could be moved to France to avoid any tariffs which might be introduced on exports to the EU if the UK leaves the single market in a hard Brexit.

According to Sky News’ report, Nissan’s decision is not expected to have a major impact on jobs.

Other Nissan models built at the Sunderland plant include the Qashqai, Juke, Q30, Note and the zero-emission electric Leaf.

Nissan Sunderland plant confirms it will build the new Qashqai and the X-Trail SUV in 2016. Pictured is Colin Lawther, Nissan's senior vice-president for manufacturing.

The U-turn comes as figures show car production slumped by almost a tenth last year, leaving the industry on “red alert” amid continued Brexit uncertainty.

Nissan's Sunderland production line.
Bridget Phillipson