MEXICO CITY – There is a new automobile manufacturing plant coming to Aguascalientes, Mexico. It was announced by the heads of the Renault-Nissan Alliance and Daimler AG and will be the source for next-generation compact vehicles for both Mercedes-Benz and Infiniti.
"Infiniti's goal is to capture 10 percent as a first step, as a first milestone, of the global premium vehicle market. To do so we need to expand our range of models, including the growing compact premium segment to appeal to customers in all of our core markets. By partnering with Daimler on development and production costs, Infiniti will move faster and will achieve greater economies of scale," said Carlos Ghosn, Chairman and CEO, Renault-Nissan Alliance.
The French-Japanese-German industrial cooperation of Daimler and the Renault-Nissan Alliance began in April 2010. It continues to strengthen; a few days ago, Infiniti and Daimler launched production of four-cylinder gasoline engines in Decherd, Tennessee.
Now, the Renault-Nissan Alliance and Daimler are expanding further their cooperation.
"We are going to start the construction of this plant in 2015. Production of Infiniti (vehicles) will start in 2017 and of Mercedes-Benz in 2018," said José Muñoz, executive vice president, Nissan Motor Co., Ltd. and chairman, Nissan North America, Inc.
The new plant in Aguascalientes, Mexico, will add nearly 5,700 additional workers and annual capacity of 300,000 vehicles when fully ramped.
"We have very-well trained employees, very skillful, high-attention to detail, high-quality, and the highest productivity, so I think it says it all. So it means it is really a great confidence that we have in Mexico and in particular Aguascalientes," said Muñoz.
Company leaders say that a close collaboration between Infiniti and Mercedes-Benz at every stage of development will ensure that vehicles within the scope of the project will clearly differ from each other in terms of product design and specifications.
"The important part of it is that it really underscores this notion of being a global brand, being a global player, producing our cars on three continents. It gives us a good, solid, diversified base to supply the market. So in terms of the overall strategy and growth, it is pivotal," said Michael Bartsch, Vice President, Infiniti Americas.
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