• Apr 4th 2011 at 7:48AM
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2012 Buick LaCrosse eAssist – Click above for high-res image gallery

Three of Hitachi's automotive factories in Japan are back online, including a facility that manufactures lithium-ion batteries for General Motors' eAssist-equipped models.

Hitachi Vehicle Energy in Ibaraki Prefecture is operational and has resumed production of lithium-ion batteries for the 2012 Buick LaCrosse eAssist and the 2012 Buick Regal eAssist models. Hitachi Automotive Systems' Sawa Works factory – the site of production for electric motors and inverters for several hybrid vehicles – is back online and pumping out parts, too.

Hitachi America spokesman Mickey Takeuchi told Automotive News (sub. req.) that, even with the progress, there are still problems:
The assembly lines have started, but it's not to 100 percent. They have electricity and water and gas.
Atsushi Konno, a spokesman for Hitachi in Tokyo, says that the plants are operating at 70 percent capacity this week as quality controls checks will be conducted.

With Toyota resuming limited production of some models and Nissan announcing that assembly lines at its Oppama factory are moving and that Leafs are trickling out of the plant's doors once again, Japan's automotive industry seems to be slowly recovering from the devastation.

[Source: Automotive News – sub. req.]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 4 Years Ago
      Nissan announced last week that it's suspending operations at nearly all plants this week (including Oppama).

      But hey - actual research before posting stories might actually improve content here - we wouldn't want that, would we?
        • 4 Years Ago
        Sure it's possible I'm wrong. But hey - at least I'm referring to an official news release from Nissan, while this article is referring to an ABG article of the same date - which refers to an older Inside Line article.

        If you refer to a more recent Nissan NA news release from Friday, you'll read that they are moving up ALL scheduled non production days from later this year to the next couple weeks in April. Given the higher Japanese content of cars manufactured in Japan, it's not difficult to assume that they will have even more difficulty maintaining full-time production especially given the fact that electricity demand still exceeds supply and rolling blackouts are still an issue in Japan.

        So - where's your source showing that production is online this week in Japan?
        • 4 Years Ago
        I thought Nissan was restarting Oppama?

        (Edmunds 3/29)


        Are they now stopping it?
        • 4 Years Ago
        Dave is correct. From Nissan,

        Oppama Plant, Tochigi Plant, Kyushu Plant, Nissan Shatai, Nissan Shatai Kyushu
        Vehicle production will be suspended between Monday, April 4 and Friday, April 8.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I suppose it's the latest large-scale version of stop/start technology.

        All things fair, Japan is still in post-tsunami rebound so industrial production may still see interruptions here and there for quite some time. On other hand, Japan if any is capable to rebuild with motivation.
        • 4 Years Ago
        You're quoting something from last week...is it possible that YOU'RE wrong?

        Today is Monday, last week's info was last week's...do you have something to prove this article's content wrong?
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