The History of Nissan


Nissan Motor Company, Ltd., shortened to Nissan, is a multinational carmaker headquartered in Japan. It was formerly a core member of the Nissan Group, but has become more independent after recent restructuring.
It formerly marketed vehicles under the "Datsun" brand name and is one of the world's largest car manufacturers. The company's global headquarters are located in Nishi-ku, Yokohama. In 1999, Nissan entered a two way alliance with Renault S.A. of France, which owns 44.4% of Nissan while Nissan holds 15% of Renault shares. Currently it is the third largest Japanese car manufacturer. It also manufactures the Infiniti luxury brand.
It was renamed to Kwaishinsha Motorcar Co. in 1918, and again to DAT Motorcar Co. in 1925. DAT Motors built trucks in addition to the DAT and Datsun passenger cars. The vast majority of its output were trucks, due to an almost non-existent consumer market for passenger cars at the time. Beginning in 1918, the first DAT trucks were produced for the military market. It was the low demand of the military market in the 1920s that forced DAT to merge in 1926 with Japan's 2nd most successful truck maker, Jitsuyo Motors.
In 1926 the Tokyo-based DAT Motors merged with the Osaka-based Jitsuyo Jidosha Co., Ltd.  a.k.a. Jitsuyo Motors (established 1919, as a Kubota subsidiary) to become DAT Automobile Manufacturing Co., Ltd. in Osaka until 1932.
In 1931, DAT came out with a new smaller car, the first "Datson", meaning "Son of DAT". Later in 1933 after Nissan took control of DAT Motors, the last syllable of Datson was changed to "sun".
In 1933, the company name was changed to Jidosha-Seizo Co., Ltd. and was moved to Yokohama.
In 1928, Yoshisuke Aikawa founded the holding company Nippon Sangyo (Japan Industries or Nippon Industries). "The name 'Nissan' originated during the 1930s as an abbreviation" used on the Tokyo stock market for Nippon Sangyo. This company was the famous Nissan "Zaibatsu"  which included Tobata Casting and Hitachi. At this time Nissan controlled foundries and car parts businesses, but Aikawa did not enter car manufacturing until 1933.
In 1931, Aikawa purchased shares in DAT Motors, and then in 1933 it merged Tobata Casting's car parts department with DAT Motors. As Tobata Casting was a Nissan company, this was the beginning of Nissan's car manufacturing.
In 1934, Aikawa "separated the expanded automobile parts division of Tobata Casting and incorporated it as a new subsidiary, which he named Nissan Motor (Nissan)" and then bought out all the Tobata Casting shareholders (using capital from Nippon Industries) in June, 1934. At this time Nissan Motors effectively became owned by Nippon Sangyo and Hitachi.
Nissan partnered with an established European company to gain access to car and engine designs. Nissan chose Austin of the United Kingdom, which later became the British Motor Corporation by its merger with Morris et al. Nissan began building Austin 7s in 1930, though the legitimacy of their license at that time is debated.
Later, in 1952 Nissan Motor Company of Japan entered into a well-documented legal agreement with Austin , for Nissan to assemble 2,000 Austins from imported partially assembled sets and sell them in Japan under the Austin trademark. The agreement called for Nissan to make all Austin parts locally within three years, a goal Nissan met. Nissan produced and marketed Austins for seven years. The agreement also gave Nissan rights to use Austin patents, which Nissan used in developing its own engines for its Datsun line of cars. In 1953 British-built Austins were assembled and sold, but by 1955, the Austin A50 - completely built by Nissan and featuring a slightly larger body with new 1489 cc engine - was on the market in Japan. Nissan produced 20,855 Austins from 1953-1959.
In 1966, Nissan merged with the Prince Motor Company, bringing into its range more upmarket cars, including the Skyline and Gloria. The Prince name was eventually abandoned, with successive Skylines and Glorias bearing the Nissan name - however, "Prince" is still used in names of certain Nissan dealers in Japan. Nissan introduced a new luxury brand for the US market in 1989 called Infiniti.
In the 1950s, Nissan made a conscious decision to expand into worldwide markets and by 1970 had become one of the world's largest exporters of cars.
In 1999, with Nissan facing severe financial difficulties, Nissan entered an alliance with Renault S.A. of France.
The first product of the Nissan-Renault alliance was the Nissan Primera, launched in 2001 and shared chassis with Renault Laguna that had been launched in 2000. Subsequently, Nissan's Micra, Note and Versa models have shared the same mechanical design as the Renault Clio.
In 2002, Toyota and Nissan agree to tie-up on hybrid technologies, and in 2004, Nissan unveiled the Altima hybrid prototype.

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