Toyota Motor Manufacturing France (TMMF) announced on Friday that as of May 2013, it will start building its Toyota Yaris compact car for export to the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico. The annual export volume is planned to be around 25,000 units.
Building the Yaris for customers across North America will represent an additional investment of 8 million euros by TMMF. This investment is required to build the car to the specific requirements of the new market, including the installation of a North American specific 1.5-liter gas engine, automatic transmission, differences in the rear bumper, as well as other items linked to specific local regulations.
Only gas versions of Yaris will be exported to North America; the diesel and hybrid versions offered in Europe will not cross the Atlantic.
Commenting on the news, Toyota Motor Europe President and CEO Didier Leroy said: “The export of one of our global models produced in Europe reinforces our commitment to European manufacturing in-line with our global vision which empowered us to take the lead in the development of small and medium sized cars.” He added: “Building on 10 years of experience and accumulated knowhow, in addition to producing the full hybrid variant of the Toyota Yaris, the export of the conventional Yaris to North America further endorses TMMF as a true global player within the Toyota organization.”
The current generation Toyota Yaris was launched in Europe in the summer of 2011, followed by the Toyota Yaris Hybrid in June 2012. Sales of the Yaris in Europe between January and May this year saw a year-on-year increase of 22 percent.