Nissan sold more than 125,000 cars in May, up almost 18 percent from the May 2013 number and among the industry's leaders for the month. The increase was led by the best-ever Mays for a number of models, including the locally built Altima and Rogue, and a record month in sales of Nissan's Leaf electric car. Sales of the group's Infiniti brand jumped more than 30 percent.
“Nissan started the month with strong momentum and rode an outstanding Memorial Day weekend to capture our best May sales performance in the history of Nissan in the U.S.,” said Fred Diaz, senior vice president of Nissan Sales & Marketing and Operations. “It’s clear that our products are resonating with the public and car sales are heating up as we head into summer.”
Nissan is moving all worldwide production of its Murano crossover to Canton, Mississippi, and has asked contractor Kelly Services to recruit 500 workers. Ramped-up production is scheduled to begin this fall and will take the company's employment at Canton above 6,000 for the first time. Suppliers based in a new park nearby are expected to hire another 400 people.
A Knoxville-based maker of inflator systems for air bags will this summer open a factory in Hartsville, east of Gallatin, that will employ 66 people. ARC Automotive executives say they will invest $3 million in the plant, which will be built in the PowerCom Industrial Center on land previously owned by the Tennessee Valley Authority.
Marangoni Tread North America has added to its dealer network of retreaders Wilson County Tire & Retreading facility in Lebanon, which has been opened by Northern Kentucky-based entrepreneur Bob Majewski. The new facility is marketing fleets new tires and retreading as well as a mounted wheel program, drive up service and pick up & delivery. Majewski is owner of Sumerel Tire Service in Newport, Kentucky, across the Ohio River from Cincinnati.
Sonic Automotive Group has purchased 13.22 acres in Brentwood's Mallory Park with plans to build a new BMW dealership.
The dealership would join Sonic Automotive's other Mallory Park properties — a Porsche dealership and an Audi dealership, which opened in August and January, respectively. The new BMW dealership will be in addition to Sonic Automotive's current location on Armory Oaks Drive in Berry Hill. According to a press release, the 13 acres accounts for all remaining Highway 65 frontage in phase II of Mallory Park.
"Sonic Automotive Group's continued investment in this project represents the strength of the company's commitment to this area," said Wood Caldwell, principal for Southeast Venture, which is representing the landowner, Dickson-based Tennsco.
Charlotte, N.C.-based Sonic Automotive operates more than 100 dealerships in 15 states, including the Mercedes-Benz dealership in Cool Springs.
MTSU has announced a partnership with two Turkish universities to help bring technology — a retrofitted rear-wheel motor that could reduce automotive fuel consumption by half — to the market. The joint effort with Meliksah University and Firat University comes two years after MTSU President Sidney McPhee signed a memorandum of understanding for academic and cultural exchange with Meliksah.
MTSU officials believe the partnership will facilitate the development of Perry’s motor into a working invention that is ready to be licensed to automotive manufacturers throughout the world. As a part of the agreement, Meliksah University will obtain an industrial partner for the project, allowing the university to obtain a research grant through the Turkish government’s equivalent of the National Science Foundation.
“Turkey has the second highest petroleum cost in the world,” said Paul Martin, whose business contacts in Turkey paved the way for McPhee’s initial agreement with Meliksah. “The government there is willing to invest in fuel conservation technology.”
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