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Cummins to Disclose New Engine Contract With Nissan

Author : Date : 2013-8-20 15:26:43


Cummins
 Inc. CMI -0.89% plans to disclose on Tuesday an agreement to supplyNissan Motor Co. 7201.TO -2.81% with a diesel engine for its Titan pickup trucks, people familiar with the matter said.

The Columbus, Ind.-based company earlier said it would announce a job-creating engine project. A spokeswoman for the company declined to provide details.

Cummins currently supplies diesel engines for some Chrysler Group LLC pickup trucks.

Nissan last year sold 21,576 Titan full-size pickups in the U.S. and a handful in Canada and the Middle East. The truck has struggled against models from General Motors Co., GM +0.32% Ford Motor Co. F -1.10% and Chrysler, which dominate the full-size pickup market. In 2012, the Detroit companies sold just over 1.5 million full-size pickups in the U.S.

The decision to use a Cummins diesel engine in the Titan line comes a few months after Nissan hired former Chrysler Ram brand chief Fred Diaz to be Nissan's U.S. sales chief.

The deal also marks a new effort by Nissan to expand in the truck market. In early 2008, Nissan had said Chrysler would let it buy its RAM truck platform for the next version of the Titan in exchange for allowing Chrysler to use a compact car design. However, that agreement fell apart when Chrysler slid toward bankruptcy.

Cummins was developing a diesel engine for Chrysler's light-duty Ram 1500, but the contract was voided in Chrysler's 2009 bankruptcy. When Chrysler decided to restart the diesel program for its light-duty truck, it used an engine from parent Fiat SpA instead of reviving the Cummins engine.

Cummins' financial performance recently has been hurt by weaker engine demand from heavy-duty truck makers and manufacturers of mining and construction machinery.

Cummins is the largest supplier of heavy-duty truck engines in North America, accounting for about 40% of the market. Cummins last month reported a profit of $414 million, or $2.20 a share, for the second quarter, down from $469 million, or $2.47 a share, a year earlier. Sales edged up 1.6% to $4.53 billion.