Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Nissan Invests in Electric Vehicles and Battery Development | AP News

TOKYO (AP). Nissan said Monday it will invest 2 trillion yen ($ 17.6 billion) over the next five years and develop a cheaper, more powerful battery to expand its electric vehicle lineup.

Japanese automaker CEO Makoto Uchida said there will be 15 new electric vehicles available by fiscal 2030. Nissan Motor Co. is aiming for 50% electrification of the company’s lineup in what Uchida has called the “Nissan Ambition 2030”. long term plan. Electrified vehicles include hybrids and other types of eco-friendly models besides electric vehicles.

Efforts are focused mainly on electric vehicles to reduce emissions and meet the needs of various customers, Uchida said. Nissan will also cut carbon emissions from its factories, he said.

The company is struggling to cover up the scandal involving its former chairman Carlos Ghosn. Ghosn, who ran Nissan for two decades after being sent to Japan by French alliance partner Renault, was arrested in Tokyo in 2018 on various charges of financial fraud.

Uchida did not mention the scandal, but did refer to “past mistakes” that he promised would never happen again at Nissan.

Nissan’s “electrification” is based on the development of the new ASSB, or all-solid-state battery, which it calls “breakthrough” because it is cheaper and generates more power than the batteries currently in use.

This means that electric transmissions are easier to use in trucks, vans, and other heavier vehicles as the batteries can be smaller. According to Nissan, ASSB will go into series production by 2028.

According to Uchida, the cost of electric vehicles will also come down thanks to battery innovations to levels comparable to those of regular gasoline cars.

“Nissan has emerged from the crisis and is ready to start a new life,” he said.

All major automakers, including Japanese rival Nissan Toyota Motor Corp., are working on electric vehicles amid growing concerns about climate change and sustainability. Global consumers are also demanding more security features.

Uchida said Nissan is hiring 3,000 engineers to strengthen its research, including digital technology for cars.

Nissan, based in Yokohama, Japan, recently suffered from a shortage of computer chips that hit all automakers due to restrictions and other measures in factories to combat the coronavirus pandemic.

The manufacturer of luxury models Infiniti, Leaf electric vehicles and Z sports cars predicts a return to profitability in the fiscal year until March 2022 after two consecutive years of losses.


Yuri Kageyama on Twitter

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