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Auto blogTue, 23 Jul 2013 08:00:00 EST
Nissan is going to be leveraging the weight of the Chinese market by selling cars influenced by the People's Republic in other markets around the globe. The influence of Chinese design is further proof of the country's importance on a global scale. Nissan isn't the only manufacturer that's looking to leverage China's burgeoning design talent, as BMW, Volkswagen, and General Motors have all set up facilities.
In fact, VW and GM have both used Chinese talent to design cars, in the Passat and Buick LaCrosse, respectively. Nissan has already tested the waters with its Beijing studios, penning the Friend-Me Concept from this year's Shanghai Auto Show. Where GM and VW used their Shanghai-based studios as more consultancies than anything else, though, Nissan is aiming to have the Beijing studio design a global car.
According to Nissan's global design head, Shiro Nakamura, that's already happening. Nakamura told Reuters that Nissan is two years from launching a Chinese-designed global model that will see sales in both North America and Europe, in addition to its home market. While Nakamura wouldn't elaborate on what the new model's styling would entail, there's a focus on what the Chinese call daqi.
Celebrating 10 years of operation at its Canton, Mississippi assembly plant, Nissan has announced that it will be adding a seventh vehicle to the plant's portfolio. Starting in 2014, production of the next-generation Murano will move from Japan to Mississippi alongside its platform mate, the Altima, which is a part of Nissan's plan to build 85 percent of its US products domestically.
In addition to the Altima, the Canton facility also produces the Armada, Xterra, Titan, Frontier and NV vans, and back in June, production of the Nissan Sentra production was moved to Canton creating an extra 1,000 jobs. At this point, there is no indication about how many jobs the Murano line will add, if any.
This is the second announcement this week of production being added in the US as Honda said that the Accord Hybrid production would move to Marysville, Ohio where the standard Accord sedan is currently built.
Remember when they called the Nissan GT-R a supercar-slayer? You can drop the "slayer" part, because the Japanese brute known as Godzilla has long since grown from an ankle-biter nipping at the heels of giants to a giant in its own right. And if that's the case with the "basic" GT-R, it's certainly the case with the new GT-R Nismo.
While the base price for the GT-R has breached the six-figure mark, the Nismo version has just been priced ten bucks shy of $150k. Factor in the $1,595 destination charge and you're looking at a $151,585 sticker price. That may seem like a lot for a Nissan, but bear in mind what you're getting for all that scrap: the GT-R Nismo's 3.8-liter twin-turbo V6 has been optimized to deliver 600 horsepower and 481 pound-feet of torque to all four wheels.
We've yet to see official performance stats, but considering that the base GT-R hits 60 in 2.6 seconds with 55 hp and 18 lb-ft less muscle, the Nismo version ought to teach a lesson or two to exotic supercars costing twice or even ten times as much. Just check it out in the videos and press release below.