Highlander Among the Hybrids Getting U.S.-Made Parts
Toyota is investing $373.8 million in five U.S. plants. The initiative supports the U.S. manufacture of parts for its first American-produced hybrid powertrains, and implementation of TNGA – Toyota New Global Architecture – in Alabama.
The automaker says it’s “just upped the stakes to remain the top manufacturer of hybrid vehicles worldwide.”
The five investments are to include
- $115.3 million for new production of hybrid transaxles (hybrid vehicle transmissions) at Buffalo, W.Va.;
- $120.96 million to expand 2.5-liter gasoline engine capacity at Georgetown, Ky.;
- $17.05 million to boost production of 2.5-liter cylinder heads at Bodine Aluminum’s plant in Troy, Mo.;
- $14.5 million to modify the Bodine plant in Jackson, Tenn. for production of hybrid transaxle cases and housings and 2.5-liter engine blocks; and
- $106 million for “a comprehensive upgrade” at Huntsville, Ala. “to build engines that complement TNGA.”
Each of the projects is scheduled to begin this year and all should be operational by 2020.
“This investment is part of our long-term commitment to build more vehicles and components in the markets in which we sell them,” Toyota Motor North America CEO Jim Lentz said in a release.
Highlander Hybrid Built in Indiana
“This strategy is designed to better serve our customers and dealers,” he said, “and positions our manufacturing operations to fulfill their needs well into the future.”
The 2.5-liter engines manufactured in Kentucky and transaxles made in West Virginia will be used in North America-built hybrid vehicles including the Highlander Hybrid manufactured in Princeton, Ind.
Toyota says it remains the world leader in gasoline-electric hybrids, with more than 3 million sales in the U.S. and 10 million globally.
An EVs Deal with Denso Too, and Mazda
The company pledged early this year to invest $10 billion in the U.S.
Toyota also said this week that approximately 85% of its vehicles “sold over the past 15 years are still on the road today.”
And, the automaker said this morning that it’s signed an agreement with Mazda and Denso “to jointly develop basic structural technologies for electric vehicles,” and is forming a new company in Japan to do so.
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Source: Toyota with Fleets & Fuels follow-up