History of Nissan
The Nissan Motor Company began life in 1933 after Yoshisuke Aikawa founded the company Nippon Sangyo and purchased shares in DAT Motors. Throughout its first years the company primarily focused on the production of motor parts and manufacturing vehicles for the Japanese military. During the 1950s Nissan expanded into the worldwide markets. Managers from Nissan realised that there was a gap in the market for quality compact vehicles so they decided to market their Datsun small car line in countries such as Australia and the Unites States. Nissan unveiled the Datsun to the American commercial market at the Los Angeles Auto Show in 1959.
In the late 1950s Nissan began to focus on improving their sedans through the addition of cutting edge technology. Over the next decade the company also released a series of critically acclaimed sports cars and sedans such as the 411 series, the Datsun 510 and the highly successful Datsun 240Z. In 1960 Nissan was the first car manufacturer from Japan to recieve the annual Deming Prize for engineering excellence. In 1966 the company built on their reputation for quality compact vehicles with the release of the Sunny. The Sunny is seen as an iconic vehicle in the 'my car' era in Japan during the 1960s. The energy crisis during the 1970s saw an huge increase in consumer interest for compact vehicles. In 1973 the Environmental Agency carried out tests that showed that the Sunny was the most economical vehicle in terms of fuel consumption. Subsequently sales of the model reached an all time high in the U.S.
Nissan have always been at the forefront of environmentally friendly developments in the automotive world. In 2002 Toyota and Nissan formed an agreement to work together on hybrid technologies and following this Nissan released the Altima hybrid prototype. However in 2010 Nissan announced that their hybrid technology would no longer be based on Toyotas. Currently the company is enjoying the success of hybrid vehicles such as the Nissan Note and Qashqai.