'Ever-Better Vehicles'

South

Toyota believes the future is now with a major investment in Kentucky toward its Toyota New Global Architecture. 

Toyota is laying claim to automotive dominance in the South. The company’s $1.33 billion investment - the highest of any automaker in Kentucky and the second-largest in state history - will make Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky Inc. (TMMK) the first plant in North America to begin producing vehicles using Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA).

Named the "Most American Made" car by Cars.com and the No. 1 selling car in America for the past 15 years, the Camry, from the 2018 model year, will become the first Toyota vehicle made in the United States to fully incorporate the new vehicle development and production technology. 

"This $1.33 billion investment is part of Toyota's plan to invest $10 billion dollars in the United States over the next five years, on top of the nearly $22 billion Toyota has invested in the U.S. over the past 60 years," says Jim Lentz, CEO of Toyota Motor North America. "Toyota New Global Architecture is about exciting, ever-better vehicles for our customers as it will improve performance of all models, including increased fuel efficiency, more responsive handling and a more stable, comfortable feel while driving."

TNGA represents a new strategy to the way the company designs, engineers and manufactures its vehicles. In addition, it will shorten the development cycle for vehicle improvements and new vehicles. TNGA retains all of Toyota's traditional values of exceptional build quality and safety while injecting a fun driving experience with more responsive handling, regardless of the model. It also allows for a more flexible production environment, which will allow Toyota Kentucky to build ever-better cars, and respond quicker and more capably to customer demands down the road.

In addition to TNGA improvements, TMMK will undergo other makeovers that will, together, modernize and streamline the production process. That includes updating equipment and construction of an all-new paint shop.

"This is the largest investment in our plant's history and it speaks directly to the quality of our people and our products, as well as the partnerships we've forged in the local community and across the state," says Wil James, president, TMMK. "This major overhaul will enable the plant to stay flexible and competitive, further cementing our presence in Kentucky."

Toyota Kentucky is the automaker's largest plant in the world, employing 8,200 team members. This represents an all-time high after recently adding more than 700 people to support the upcoming launch of the 2018 Camry. Last year, TMMK produced nearly a quarter of the total number of Toyota vehicles produced in North America – more than 500,000. In total, the plant has produced more than one-third – 11 million – of all Toyota vehicles manufactured in North America since 1986.

Today's announcement adds to the $530 million investment the plant committed to in 2013, in part to support Lexus production. This brings Toyota Kentucky's investment in the last four years to approximately $1.86 billion. 

A recent study by the Center for Automotive Research shows Toyota Kentucky supports nearly 30,000 jobs across the state (direct, indirect, and spin-off). TMMK employees live in 80 Kentucky counties, and currently Toyota has more than 100 suppliers located across the Commonwealth.

"This major investment further solidifies Toyota's long-term commitment to its Kentucky plant," says Secretary Terry Gill of the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development. "Its ripple effects will add to Toyota's three decades of transformative impact on our communities and for our residents across the Commonwealth. Additionally, this strengthens Kentucky's status as a top state for auto manufacturing."

Additionally, Toyota is giving back to Scott County to help drive economic development efforts for the community. Three properties at Lanes Run Business Park, totaling nearly 22-acres, as well as $1 million for future land purchases, are being donated to further advance the vision for the area. Additionally, Toyota is committing $2 million over the next 10 years to Scott County United to go toward economic development initiatives that will benefit the community and region.

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