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Nissan Motor expands plan for Rogue exports to U.S. from South Korea

Detail view of the emblem on the 2016 Nissan Titan pickup truck after it was unveiled at the first press preview day of the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, Michigan, January 12, 2015. REUTERS/Mark Blinch

SEOUL (Reuters) - The Renault-Nissan alliance said on Thursday it would export 38 percent more Nissan Rogue crossovers to the United States from South Korea in 2015 than planned earlier, to meet rising demand in North America.

The alliance will produce 110,000 Rogue crossovers at Renault's (RENA.PA) South Korean factory for U.S. exports this year, from its previous plan of 80,000, it said in a statement.

Nissan <7201.T> started producing the Rogue in South Korea and shipping it to the United States last year, a move that helped boost the factory utilization of Renault Samsung (RSM), the South Korean unit of the French carmaker.

Renault Samsung, squeezed by bigger rival Hyundai Motor <005380.KS> and German imports, saw its domestic sales nearly halve in 2012, although they have been recovering since then.

The Rogue, of which a new version was launched in 2013, is Nissan's second best-selling model in the United States after its Altima mid-sized sedan, and posted a 13 percent rise in sales in January from a year earlier.

Nissan also shifted the production of Rogue from Japan to the United States and started producing the model in Tennessee in 2013.

(Reporting by Hyunjoo Jin; Editing by Anupama Dwivedi)