Nissan is investing $303 million in its flagship auto plant in Japan’s Tochigi prefecture in a first rollout of a production system geared toward electric vehicles.
Nissan Motor Co. Executive Vice President Hideyuki Sakamoto said that manufacturing methods must change because vehicles increasingly have both hybrid and electric engines and new parts for connectivity and artificial intelligence services.
Sakamoto said the production changes, set to be completed next year, use robotics and sensors to decrease physical stress on assembly-line workers. They are tailored for a workforce increasingly manned by senior workers and women.
Among the innovations for Nissan’s so-called intelligent factory is a powertrain mounting system that allows at least 27 configurations to be installed in one procedure.