JOHANNESBURG - Nissan South Africa hosted a media conference on Tuesday, where it highlighted the impact of Covid-19 on the rollout of its all-new Navara bakkie. According to Nissan South Africa’s executive’s, the all-new Navara will only go on sale in South Africa in July 2021.
In 2019, Nissan confirmed a R3 billion investment to facilitate the local production of the new Navara pickup. The investment would see the Navara rolling off the production line alongside the popular NP200 half-ton pickup and NP300 one-ton Hardbody that is already produced at the company’s South African plant in Rosslyn.
The new Navara, however, will only be alongside the NP300 for a very short time as the vintage one-tonner will be discontinued by November 2021. Lower spec versions of the new Navara, including single cab variants, will however help to plug the void left by the departed NP300.
The new Navara and the NP200 will be the only bakkies you will be able to buy from the iconic Japanese brand by the end of the year.
Much needed investment
The impact of the Navara production has been substantial particularly in a pandemic, according to Nissan SA, extending from the Nissan facility to its people and the communities in which the company operates.
The upgraded Nissan Rosslyn plant now has a new, flexible production line and additional production facilities. R190 million has already been invested in re-skilling and training Nissan South Africa’s employees to expand their expertise in preparation for the Navara’s local production the company’s production trial engineers, for example, spent three months receiving virtual training (due to Covid-19 travel restrictions) from Nissan trainers in Japan on implementing the model here in South Africa.
Growth potential high
Nissan SA’s executives affirmed that the new Navara’s journey does not stop with an investment in South Africa. Local operations are aligning with the Nissan Next Transformation Plan to increase its passenger/crossover market presence, and to become the LCV production hub for its regional markets.
In addition to this, Nissan has also entered automotive policy discussions with the Kenyan government, with the vision to invest in manufacturing plants in these countries.
Best in class tech for Navara
When the new Navara arrives in local showrooms later this year, Nissan says it will boast best-in-class technology through the Nissan Intelligent Mobility (NIM) suite of technologies. "With the new Navara, we once again bring the latest advanced NIM technology that is leading the pickup segment, bringing the best of Japanese technology to ensure enhanced dynamic performance on- and off-road, as well as safety and comfort ushering in a new age of toughness, tech and seamless drives,” explains Stefan Haasbroek, Nissan South Africa Marketing Director.
Technologies that you can look forward to include Intelligent Forward Collision Warning, Intelligent Emergency Braking, Intelligent Driver Alertness, Intelligent High Beam Assist, Lane Departure Warning, Blind Spot Warning, Intelligent Around View Monitor with Moving Object Detection and Rear Cross Traffic Alert.
We’ll bring you more information on the all-new Navara in the coming months.