Toyota to move Corolla production out of Cambridge

Wednesday April 15, 2015
Written by Manufacturing AUTOMATION
Apr. 15, 2015 - Toyota announced today it will stop producing the Corolla in Canada within a few years as part of a multi-year plan to realign its manufacturing operations in North America.

As part of the Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA), The Japanese automaker will invest about US$1 billion to construct its newest North American manufacturing facility in Guanajuato, Mexico, to produce the Corolla. The plant is scheduled to begin operations in 2019, and will feature the latest TNGA production engineering technology, employ 2,000 workers, and have the capacity to produce 200,000 units annually.  

At that time, production of the Corolla in Cambridge, Ont., North Plant will switch to “mid-sized, higher-value vehicles,” said Toyota. According to Toyota, this marks the company’s first major reinvestment in the Cambridge plant since it opened in 1997.  

It also said it will make “significant new investments” over several years in Toyota Motor Manufacturing Canada’s (TMMC’s) assembly plants in Cambridge and Woodstock, Ont., to “implement TNGA modifications, maintaining the facilities’ importance as a strategic manufacturing hub.”

These moves advance its efforts under TNGA to group production by common vehicle platforms in each North American plant to improve efficiency and enhance flexibility, it said.

“We are thrilled to invest further in North America so we can better meet the needs of our customers for decades to come,” said Jim Lentz, Toyota North America CEO. “This strategic re-thinking of how and where we build our products will create new opportunities for our company, our business partners and our team members across the region.”

The company didn’t announce what vehicles will be made in Canada or how much it will spend on its Ontario plants.

“Transforming our Canadian vehicle assembly plants is an equally important part of our strategic plan to position the North America region for sustainable long-term growth,” added Lentz.

The Woodstock plant will continue to manufacture the RAV4, while the Cambridge South Plant will build the Lexus RX 350 and 450h.

“This commitment to Toyota manufacturing in Canada is a huge vote of confidence in our team members,” added Brian Krinock, TMMC president. “With a new platform, new products and new technology, Toyota’s continued investments in Canada will take us to the forefront of advanced manufacturing, further drive our competitiveness and position.”

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