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Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn has just one teensy-weensy request for its United States arm: Double your sales by 2017.

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In spite of contraction in Europe and a series of natural disasters in Japan and Thailand that crippled supply, Renault-Nissan – with a tiny bit of help from Russian partner Avotvaz – sold 8.03 million cars in 2011. The record year outdid 2010 sales by 10 percent, with Nissan's sales growing 14% and Renault improving by 4.6 percent.

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Nissan's strong sales and increased revenue led the automaker to a $6.27 billion operating profit for 2010. Nissan, which counts January through March as its fiscal fourth quarter, managed overall revenue of $102 billion, while net income came in at $3.72 billion after taxes.

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2011 Nissan Juke – Click above for high-res image gallery

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Speaking at Nissan Motor's annual general meeting of shareholders Tuesday, CEO Carlos Ghosn held to his forecast of a 4.5 percent increase in worldwide sales for Nissan, despite dismal first quarter sales in the Japanese domestic market.

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