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Nissan bolstering UK production as split with EU looms

Greater economies of scale, lower distribution costs seen softening Brexit's blow

Nissan Motor intends to increase output by 20% at its Sunderland plant in the U.K.

TOKYO -- Nissan Motor looks to boost production by 20% at a massive U.K. factory and source more parts within the country, aiming to offset higher costs expected after Britain's exit from the European Union becomes final.

The Japanese automaker will begin turning out the latest model in the Qashqai sport utility vehicle and other lines at its Sunderland plant in northern England as soon as 2019, along with autos not currently assembled at the factory. Production of electric vehicles also will increase in anticipation of higher demand in the U.K. and Europe, feeding 20% growth in total output to around 600,000 vehicles per year.

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