Nissan will boost Micra production at French Renault plant, report says

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RENNES, France -- Nissan plans to increase planned production of its Micra hatchback at a Renault factory in France, a report said.

The Japanese automaker said last year that it will transfer production of European versions of the subcompact from India to alliance partner Renault's plant in Flins, northwest France, in 2016.

Nissan said at the time it planned annual production of 82,000 units of the Micra at Flins.

Nissan will add annual production of 40,000 to 50,000 units on top of the 82,000, Les Echos reported Monday.

A Nissan spokesman declined comment on the report.

A Renault spokeswoman said the plan was "under discussion" and Nissan executive committee members will consider whether to approve the extra production later this month.

Renault aims to raise capacity utilization at its French car factories to 85 percent by 2016 from 60 percent to 65 percent percent currently.

The Flins factory currently builds the Clio and Zoe subcompacts. The Micra shares a platform with the Clio.

Nissan transferred Micra production from its plant in Sunderland, England, to Chennai, India, in 2010 to free up capacity for the Juke subcompact crossover. The Chennai factory will continue to produce the current version for the Micra and will also manufacture the next generation beginning in 2016.

You can reach Bruce Gain at bgain@crain.com.

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