YOKOHAMA, Japan—Nissan unveiled a new assembly line at its Tochigi plant as part of the automaker’s Intelligent Factory initiative.

“The automotive industry is in a period of great change, and solving the global challenge of climate change is urgent,” says Hideyuki Sakamoto, Nissan’s executive vice president for manufacturing and supply chain management.

The Intelligent Factory initiative is intended to help the automaker address issues and trends such as a domestic labor shortage, climate change, the COVID-19 pandemic and vehicle electrification.

Tochigi Plant is scheduled to start production of the new Nissan Ariya crossover electric vehicle this year.

Nissan hopes to achieve carbon neutrality across its operations by 2050. The company aims to accomplish this by increasing productivity in vehicle assembly and improving energy and materials efficiencies. For example, plant equipment will be fully electrified by 2050. In addition, all electricity will be generated from renewable sources and or generated with onsite fuel cells that use alternative fuels.

“By rolling out the Nissan Intelligent Factory initiative globally, starting at the Tochigi Plant, we will more flexibly, efficiently and effectively manufacture next-generation vehicles for a decarbonized society,” says Sakamoto.