It looks like another brand will be following in the footsteps of Honda in the country. Nissan Philippines is set to stop the production of its Almera subcompact sedan in its Sta Rosa plant. Mayor of Sta. Rosa City, Arlene Arcillas revealed during an interview with a local radio station that the local council has been made aware of the situation of the Japanese brand.
Nissan Philippines is in a different situation compared to Honda. While the Japanese brand will be stopping the production of the Almera locally, the plant itself will still remain in operation. Nissan will not be closing down its Sta. Rosa plant but instead, it will be focused on the assembly Completely Knocked Down (CKD) vehicle kits. These kits refer to cars that came to the country as parts and then were put together at a local manufacturing facility. According to Arcillas, the move to prioritize CKD vehicles will result in the downsizing of the brand’s workforce. Despite this, the effects won’t be as great as the shutdown of Honda in the area.
Nissan on a global scale has already been making moves to trim its model lineup due to financial issues back in 2019. The halt in production might be part of that streamlining process. With newer versions of the Almera and Sentra already available in other of our ASEAN neighbors the brand might be gearing up to bring them in but as CKD vehicles.
The Nissan Almera locally assembled at the brand’s Nissan Technopark in Sta. Rosa Laguna. Overseeing the assembly of these units is Univation Motors Philippines (UMP). UMP makes the Almera from the ground up which includes the body panel stamping for the vehicle.
Sta. Rosa City is known for the multiple car brands that have set up shop in the area. The City benefits from these brands greatly due to the business taxes these companies pay. Without the taxes from these companies Sta. Rosa will experience losses in its annual business taxable income. The Honda pull-out alone will cost the city around P80 million. While the DTI is already making moves to try and safeguard the local automotive production industry, it might be a case of too little, too late.