Nissan's quarterly profit rises 36 pct on cheap yen, US and Europe sales, sticks to forecasts

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TOKYO — Nissan's April-June profit jumped 36 percent as the Japanese automaker benefited from a cheap yen and better sales in the U.S. and Europe.

Nissan Motor Co., which makes the March subcompact, Leaf electric car and Infiniti luxury models, reported Wednesday a fiscal first quarter profit of 152.8 billion yen ($1.2 billion). Quarterly sales grew nearly 18 percent to 2.9 trillion yen ($23 billion).

Nissan stuck to its forecast for a 485 billion yen ($4 billion) annual profit.

"Given our on-going product offensive, the benefits of our alliance strategy and continued cost discipline, Nissan is on track to deliver its full-year financial guidance," said Carlos Ghosn, president and chief executive, who also heads alliance partner Renault SA of France.

The Yokohama-based company said it sold 1.29 million vehicles during the period. That 4 percent growth outpaced the overall market increase of 1.5 percent.

It expects to sell 5.55 million vehicles this fiscal year, up 4 percent from the previous year, as it offers models such as the Titan pick-up in the U.S. and the Lannia sedan in China.

During the fiscal first quarter, Nissan launched the new Maxima sedan in the U.S., and sales were also good in China, the company said.

Honda Motor Co., slammed hardest by the recent recall of defective Takata Corp. air bags, reports earnings Friday.

Toyota Motor Corp., the world's top automaker for the last three years, which lost to Volkswagen AG in global vehicle sales for the first half, reports earnings next week.

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