Chicago Auto Show 2014

We could be in for a big push from Nissan in the manufacturing realm if Vice President of US Sales and Marketing Fred Diaz has anything to say about it. Speaking to the Automotive Press Association recently, Diaz (above) expressed a desire to build some 85 percent of the vehicles Nissan sells to Americans in the US, claiming it will happen "in the very near future." Nissan has already moved to increase exports of its US-built products, and in 2013, it built just over 76 percent of the models it sold in this market within our country's borders.

"Any issues of us taking advantage of the value of the yen, we want to dispel that," Diaz told reporters, pointing out the contentious issue of currency manipulation. There's also the obvious goal of positive PR - Americans like things made in America, and they like companies that invest in America. Diaz is quick to point out that Nissan had done just that: "While a lot of people retrenched [during the recession], instead we leaned into it and we continued investing and in fact made over $5 billion in investments, bringing a lot of production from Japan to the United States and to Mexico," Diaz said, pointing out that Nissan has helped create 8,000 jobs through its investments.

Nissan runs three factories in the US, two in Tennessee and one in Mississippi. Between the three, production is up 22 percent, while the overall exports from the facilities have increased by 100,000 units, Diaz told reporters.

Still, there's reason to believe that Nissan's goal of sourcing 85 percent of the cars it sells in the US from the US is going to be tough to attain, according to The Detroit News. "We see them forecast for 1.15 million in 2014, which is slightly up from 2013. But we see them flat throughout the rest of the decade," Stephanie Brinley of IHS Automotive told the newspaper. "Compared to some of the other companies, there's not as many new additive products coming."