Nissan is attempting to resolve issues at one of its factories which have caused production delays for its new Ariya electric crossover.
Despite launching in 2022, only 201 Ariya EVs were delivered to customers before the end of the fourth quarter. It is not clear what orders, if any, have been fulfilled since the end of December. According to Reuters, sources familiar with the issue partially blame the factory disruption on a production design created and installed by Nissan. Apart from automating multiple processes, the new format also introduces a state-of-the-art paint line, and a system which allows vehicles with electric, hybrid or gas powertrains to be assembled on the same line. However, the sources told Reuters that integrating the design had been “an extremely, extremely high challenge.”
Although it concedes that the paint line is an issue, Nissan has also blamed the Ariya delay on shortages of semiconductors and supply chain disruptions. The automaker had originally hoped to build roughly 8,800 units a month at the factory. However, Reuters reports that these expectations have dropped to 6,900 for March, with even lower numbers anticipated before summer.
The Ariya is Nissan’s first global vehicle release in half a decade, and is intended to bring the brand back into the spotlight. However, in that same time period, multiple crisis, such as the loss its now-fugitive CEO, COVID-related factory closures and supply chain disruptions have complicated the automaker’s plans for the future. Analysts are now dubious over the automaker’s ability to turn matters around in a reasonable amount of time.