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A Brief History of the Nissan Brand

Last updated 6 years ago

The history of Nissan reflects over a century of hard work and innovation. Once you see how far this auto manufacturer has come and their dedication to the design of each vehicle, you’ll have an even greater appreciation of your new or used Nissan vehicle.

Pre-War Development: The name “Nissan” is an abbreviation for holding company Nippon Sangyo. This conglomerate firm, founded in 1928 by Yoshisuke Aikawa, was one of Japan’s largest prior to WWII. In 1930, the firm acquired DAT Motors and merged the company with other auto designers under the Nissan umbrella. By 1934, this small subsidiary had developed into Nissan Motors. Until the end of WWII, Nissan produced trucks and other machinery for the Japanese military. The first major Nissan plant was actually constructed in Japan-controlled China.

Mid-Century Growth: After the war, Nissan Motors began looking outward for vehicle design inspiration. This interest led Nissan to a partnership with the UK’s Austin Motor Company in the early 1950s. Nissan assembled and built Austin vehicles for sale in Japan and Austin allowed Nissan to develop vehicles based on their patents. Popular models like the Datsun 510 and Datsun 240Z were direct results of this partnership. In the next decade, a merger with Prince Motor Company expanded Nissan’s inventory to include upmarket performance vehicles.
Modern Expansion: In the late 50s and 60s, Nissan set its eyes on the world. The company began building more powerful, roomier cars to attract American car buyers. By the end of the 1960s, Nissan was a worldwide leader in automobile exports. The 1973 oil crisis brought even more attention to Nissan’s compact, fuel-efficient vehicles. As Nissan’s success grew, the motor company established new factories across the globe.

The modern Nissan lineup has great choices for families and car lovers alike. If you live in Chantilly and have an interest in fine imported vehicles, visit Brown’s Dulles Nissan. Our staff would be happy to assist in your search for a new or used Nissan. Call us at (703) 948-1100 for dealer information or driving



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