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Toyota is adding U.S. six-speed automatic transmission production in order to cope with demand.
Toyota announced it will increase 6-speed automatic transmission assembly and machining capacity by 20,000 per month in early 2015 at its Buffalo powertrain plant and Bodine Aluminum casting facilities in Missouri and Tennessee.
Toyota said this project will create more than 100 jobs.
Fifteen years after starting production in 1998, Toyota Motor Manufacturing West Virginia (TMMWV) has built over 10 million powertrain (engines and transmissions), and today, Toyota is investing a combined $102 million in manufacturing facilities to meet increased consumer demand for Toyotas and the engines that power them.
$90 million will go directly to TMMWV, raising total plant investment to more than $1.4 billion and creating about 80 jobs.
TMMWV currently produces 500,000 transmissions per year, and this investment will increase production to 740,000 transmissions per year starting in 2015.
“This capacity increase helps us meet growing North American demand and is a part of our localization strategy to ‘build where we sell,’” said Millie Marshall, TMMWV senior vice president of manufacturing and administration. “This latest investment helps us better serve our North American customers and prepares us for an even brighter future.”
TMMWV builds six-speed transmissions for the Avalon, Camry, Highlander, Lexus RX350, Sienna and Venza.
From Mississippi to Indiana and in between, all of these cars are built in North America.
“Toyota Motor Manufacturing West Virginia has been a dedicated corporate citizen for more than 15 years, and with today’s announcement has expanded eight times since first opening. This continued growth is a testament to the hard-working Toyota team members who have committed themselves to producing quality powertrain at the Buffalo plant,” said West Virginia Governor Earl Ray Tomblin. “The company’s continued investment in the Mountain State is also a testament to the business climate we’ve worked hard to create – one that encourages companies to expand, innovate, and create new jobs. On behalf of all West Virginians, I thank Toyota for the company’s continued confidence in our workforce.”
Toyota also announced that Bodine Aluminum, a Toyota casting part manufacturing facility, will invest $11 million at its Troy, Mo. plant and $1 million in Jackson, Tenn. to provide transmission cases and housing parts to Toyota West Virginia.
“This expansion at Bodine Aluminum’s facility in Troy marks another important milestone for Bodine and Toyota, for this community, and for Missouri’s resurgent automotive manufacturing industry,” Missouri Governor Jay Nixon said. “As a state, we will keep pursuing proven, fiscally responsible policies and making smart, strategic investments to move this industry and our economy forward, so that auto industry jobs in Troy and throughout Missouri can continue to grow.”