Magna Opens Plant in UK for Producing Lightweight Liftgates
Magna continues to develop innovative, lightweight process and product solutions to help its automaker customers meet increasingly stringent emissions and fuel economy goals. This is evidenced by the start of production at Magna’s new Sunderland in England plant, which recently celebrated its grand opening and is producing lightweight, thermoplastic liftgate modules for the third generation Nissan Qashqai. Magna’s investment in the state-of-the-art greenfield facility features several advanced manufacturing technologies, such as robotic adhesive bonding cells, advanced vision systems and ultrasonic leak testing. The plant currently employs 280 people.
The thermoplastic liftgate on the new Qashqai is lighter than its steel predecessor, reflecting a growing trend among automakers looking to reduce mass to help improve fuel economy and lower emissions. Thermoplastic materials enable deeper draws, complex geometries and tighter radii, resulting in greater styling and design freedom thus helping automakers distinguish their brands.
Magna will deliver the liftgates for final vehicle assembly to Nissan’s neighboring assembly plant. A market leader in lightweight, thermoplastic liftgates, Magna also manufactures them for the Qashqai’s sister platform in North America, the 2022 Nissan Rogue.