UK: Nissan has begun construction of the first Infiniti production facilities in Europe, following approval by Sunderland City Council’s Development Control Committee.

The 25,000 sq. m extension to Nissan’s production facility, which is part of a previously announced £250m investment, will house specialist equipment for Q3 body assembly and fi nal assembly (trim and chassis).

The new bodyshop will enable assembly of the Q3’s premium platform, while the trim and chassis extension will include a new engine installation facility.

On receiving council approval, Kevin Fitzpatrick, vice-president for manufacturing in the UK described the upcoming arrival of the Infi niti as “a new chapter in our operations in Sunderland”.

Fintan Knight, vice-president, Infi niti Europe, commented: “The compact segment is crucial for our future growth plans and the decision to invest and build the vehicle in the UK further underlines our long-term commitment to Europe.”

Production is set to begin in 2015, when the Infi niti will become the fi rst new car brand to be manufactured on such a scale in more than two decades.