Nissan 3rd Japanese automaker to shift truck production to cars

Following the lead of Japan's other two big-time automakers, Toyota and Honda, Nissan has just announced that it too will be cutting truck production to focus on cars. At its Canton, Mississippi plant, Nissan will cut in half the number of shifts for workers assembling Titan pickup trucks and Armada full-size SUVs. On the flip-side, the automaker will add a third shift for production of the Altima mid-size sedan, which should allow it to keep its workers on the job. This move is not surprising, as passenger cars have been outselling their truck brethren handily in these days of record high gasoline prices. Ford, which has a new F-150 set to go on sale shortly, has offered employee pricing for its trucks, while General Motors recently announced that it would be idling four plants that produce trucks and SUVs and may rid itself of the HUMMER brand entirely. Dodge, for its part, is offering cheap gas and big incentives as a ploy to get consumers interested in its pickups. Unfortunately, it's not as easy for our domestic automakers to switch plants from producing trucks to passenger cars as many are older facilities that weren't built with flexible production in mind.

[Source: Automotive News - sub. req'd]

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