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|Type||Public (TYO: 7201; Pink Sheets: NSANY)|
|Founded||December 26, 1933|
|Headquarters||Nishi-ku, Yokohama, Japan |
(Officially registered in Kanagawa-ku, Yokohama, Kanagawa)
|Revenue||¥7.517 trillion / $80.92 billion FY 2009 |
|Operating income||¥ 311.6 billion / $3.35 billion FY 2009 |
|Net income||¥ 42.4 billion / $460 million FY 2009 |
|Employees||30,718 (non-consolidated basis) |
175,766 (consolidated basis)
Nissan Motor Company, Ltd. (Japanese: 日産自動車株式会社 Nissan Jidōsha Kabushiki-gaisha) (TYO: 7201), shortened to Nissan, is a multinational automaker headquartered in Japan. It was formerly a core member of the Nissan Group, but has become more independent after its restructuring under Carlos Ghosn (CEO).
It formerly marketed vehicles under the "Datsun" brand name and is one of the largest car manufacturers in the world. As of August 2009, the company's global headquarters is located in Nishi-ku, Yokohama. In 1999, Nissan entered a two way alliance with Renault S.A. of France, which owns 43.4% of Nissan while Nissan holds 15% of Renault shares, as of 2008. The current market share of Nissan, along with Honda and Toyota, in American auto sales represent the largest of the automotive firms based in Asia that have been increasingly encroaching on the historically dominant US-based "Big Three" consisting of GM, Ford and Chrysler. In its home market, Nissan is the third largest car manufacturer, with Honda being second by a small margin and Toyota in a very dominant first. Along with its normal range of models, Nissan also produces a range of luxury models branded as Infiniti.
The pronunciation of its name is different in different markets. In the U.S., the brand is pronounced /ˈniːsɑːn/, while in the UK it is /ˈnɪsæn/. In Japanese, it is [nisːaɴ].
The new car's name was an acronym of the company's partners' family names:
It was renamed to Kwaishinsha Motorcar Co. in 1918, and again to DAT Motorcar Co. in 1925. DAT Motors built trucks in addition to the DAT and Datsun passenger cars. The vast majority of its output were trucks, due to an almost non-existent consumer market for passenger cars at the time. Beginning in 1918, the first DAT trucks were produced for the military market. It was the low demand of the military market in the 1920s that forced DAT to merge in 1926 with Japan's 2nd most successful truck maker, Jitsuyo Motors.
In 1926 the Tokyo-based DAT Motors merged with the Osaka-based Jitsuyo Jidosha Co., Ltd. (実用自動車製造株式会社 Jitsuyō Jidōsha Seizō Kabushiki-Gaisha) a.k.a. Jitsuyo Motors (established 1919, as a Kubota subsidiary) to become DAT Automobile Manufacturing Co., Ltd. (ダット自動車製造株式会社 Datto Jidōsha Seizō Kabushiki-Gaisha) in Osaka until 1932.
In 1931, DAT came out with a new smaller car, the first "Datson", meaning "Son of DAT". Later in 1933 after Nissan took control of DAT Motors, the last syllable of Datson was changed to "sun", because "son" also means "loss" (損) in Japanese, hence the name "Datsun" (ダットサン Dattosan).
In 1933, the company name was Nipponized to Jidosha-Seizo Co., Ltd. (自動車製造株式会社 Jidōsha Seizō Kabushiki-Gaisha, "Automobile Manufacturing Co., Ltd.") and was moved to Yokohama.
In 1928, Yoshisuke Aikawa founded the holding company Nippon Sangyo (Japan Industries or Nippon Industries). "The name 'Nissan' originated during the 1930s as an abbreviation" used on the Tokyo stock market for Nippon Sangyo. This company was the famous Nissan "Zaibatsu" (combine) which included Tobata Casting and Hitachi. At this time Nissan controlled foundries and auto parts businesses, but Aikawa did not enter automobile manufacturing until 1933.
In 1931, Aikawa purchased controlling(?) shares in DAT Motors, and then in 1933 it merged Tobata Casting's automobile parts department with DAT Motors. As Tobata Casting was a Nissan company, this was the beginning of Nissan's automobile manufacturing.
In 1934, Aikawa "separated the expanded automobile parts division of Tobata Casting and incorporated it as a new subsidiary, which he named Nissan Motor (Nissan)". Nissan Motor Co., Ltd. (日産自動車 Nissan Jidōsha). The shareholders of the new company however were not enthusiastic about the prospects of the automobile in Japan, so Aikawa bought out all the Tobata Casting shareholders (using capital from Nippon Industries) in June, 1934. At this time Nissan Motors effectively became owned by Nippon Sangyo and Hitachi.
Nissan built trucks, airplanes, and engines for the Japanese military. The company's main plant was moved to China after land there was captured by Japan. The plant made machinery for the Japanese war effort until it was captured by American and Russian forces. From 1947 to 1948 the company was called Nissan Heavy Industries Corp.
DAT had inherited Kubota's chief designer, American William R. Gorham. This, along with Aikawa's inspiring 1908 visit to Detroit, was to greatly affect Nissan's future.
Although it had always been Aikawa's intention to use cutting-edge auto making technology from America, it was Gorham that carried out the plan. All the machinery, vehicle designs and engine designs originally came out of the United States. Much of the tooling came from the Graham factory and Nissan had a Graham license under which trucks were made. The machinery was imported into Japan by Mitsubishi on behalf of Nissan, which went into the first Yokohama factory to produce cars.
From 1993-2002 Nissan partnered with Ford to market the Mercury Villager and the Nissan Quest. The two minivans were manufactured with all the same parts and were virtually identical aside from several cosmetic differences. In 2002, Ford discontinued the Villager to make room for its Freestar and Monterey. Nissan brought out a new version of the Quest in 2004, which was designed in-house and no longer bore any relation to Ford's models.In 1992, Nissan relaunched its Terrano four-wheel drive, which was cosmetically and mechanically identical
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