Mar 24, 2021

Nissan LEAF reaches landmark production capacity

Georgia Wilson
2 min
Nissan Sunderland production factory
Harnessing innovative manufacturing capabilities, Nissan achieves landmark production capacity for its 100% electric vehicle, LEAF...

Between 1986 and 1990, Nissan’s classic Bluebird vehicle produced a total of 187,178 units, taking over 22 hours for each vehicle to be built. 

35 years later - on its mission towards carbon neutrality - Nissan has improved its manufacturing capabilities with innovative technology. In doing so, Nissan has reduced its production time to 10 hours for its 100% electric vehicle - Nissan LEAF - and has manufactured 195,380 units.

"Bluebird was an iconic model for the plant and evokes fond memories among all Nissan enthusiasts. LEAF volumes overtaking Bluebird shows how dramatically our manufacturing innovation, skills and processes have evolved as we drive towards electrification. LEAF overtaking Bluebird is a landmark – but there are many more to come for our team at the plant as our electrified line up grows,” said Alan Johnson, Vice President Manufacturing, at Nissan Sunderland Plant.

Nissan’s Sunderland Plant

With a strong commitment to quality, NIssan has switched its wheel nuts and carburetors for electrical architecture and cybersecurity. Its staff at its Sunderland plant has grown from 430 in 1986, to 6,000. 

Did you know? 19 staff who started in 1986 continue to work at the plant today on the Nissan LEAF.

Nissan’s 2050 carbon neutral goals

With ambitions to achieve carbon neutrality access to its entire operations and life cycle of its products by 2050, Nissan, as part of its efforts, will have every all-new Nissan vehicle offering electrified by the early 2030s, as well as introduce innovative electrification and manufacturing technology.

In addition to its efforts, Nissan has recently announced plans to expand its renewable energy generation at its plant in Sunderland proposing a 20MW solar farm extension. If approved it will mean that 20% of the plant’s energy will be coming from all onsite renewables.

For more information on manufacturing topics - please take a look at the latest edition of Manufacturing Global.

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May 10, 2021

Timeline: Tesla's Construction of Gigafactories

Georgia Wilson
3 min
Sustainable Manufacturing | Gigafactory | Electric Vehicles | EVs | Tesla | Smart Manufacturing | Automotive Manufacturing | Technology
A brief timeline of Tesla’s Gigafactory construction progress over the years, furthering its efforts in sustainable energy and electric vehicles...

Tesla's mission to accelerate the world's transition to sustainable energy

Founded in 2003, Tesla was established by a group of engineers with a drive to "prove that people didn’t need to compromise to drive electric – that electric vehicles can be better, quicker and more fun to drive than gasoline cars." Almost 20 years on, Tesla today is not only manufacturing all electric vehicles, but scaleable clean energy generation and storage too. 

"Tesla believes the faster the world stops relying on fossil fuels and moves towards a zero-emission future, the better," says Tesla. "Electric cars, batteries, and renewable energy generation and storage already exist independently, but when combined, they become even more powerful – that’s the future we want. "

Tesla Gigafactories

In order to deliver on its promise of "accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy through increasingly affordable electric vehicles and energy products," Tesla's Gigafactory journey began in 2014 to meet its produciton goals of 500,000 cars per year (a figure which would require the entire worlds supply of lithium-ion batteries at the time).  

By ramping up its production and bringing it in-house, the cost of Tesla 's battery cells declined "through economies of scale, innovative manufacturing, reduction of waste, and the simple optimisation of locating most manufacturing processes under one roof." With this reduction in battery cost, "Tesla can make products available to more and more people, allowing us to make the biggest possible impact on transitioning the world to sustainable energy."

2014: Giga Nevada and Giga New York begin construction

Born out of necessity to meet its own supply demand for sustainable energy, Tesla began the construction of its first Gigafactory in June 2014, in Reno, Nevada, followed by its Buffalo, New York facility the same year. "By bringing cell production in-house, Tesla manufactures batteries at the volumes required to meet production goals, while creating thousands of jobs," said Tesla.

2016: Reno, Nevada grand opening

Tesla’s construction of Giga Nevada came to an end in 2016, the first of its Gigafactories to complete its construction project. The factory’s grand opening took place in July 2016, and by mid-2018 reached an annual battery production rate of 20 GWh, which made it the highest-volume battery plant in the world that year. 

2017: Giga New York begins production

Two years after Tesla’s second Gigafactory began construction, Giga New York was complete, and started its production operations in 2017.

2019: Giga Shanghai construction to production in record time

In 2019, Tesla selected Shanghai as its third Gigafactory location. The company constructed the factory in record time, taking just 168 working days from gaining permits to finishing the plant's construction.

2019: Giga Berlin begins construction

Announced in November 2019, Tesla began the construction of its first European Gigafactory in Berlin. The Gigafactory is still under construction.

2020: Giga Texas begins construction

The following year in August 2020, Tesla began the construction of its Giga Texas factory. The company’s third Gigafactory in the US is still under construction.

2021: Giga Texas and Giga Berlin expected completion of construction

Looking to the future, Tesla expects to complete the construction of its Giga Texas and Giga Berlin factories in May 2021 and July 2021 respectively.

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