Toyota has decided to reduce its planned investment in its new plant in the Mexican state of Guanajuato by 30 percent, as well as cut its production capacity by half, a company spokeswoman confirmed today.
The new plant, which Toyota has already begun to build in this central Mexican state and whose opening is scheduled for 2019, will have a smaller scale than initially planned because the Japanese automotive giant has modified its strategy for the North American region.
Toyota plans to invest $ 1 billion in what will be the company’s 15th manufacturing plant in North America, but this amount will be reduced to $ 700 million.
This reduction “does not alter our long-term commitment to Mexico, the change is necessary to ensure the long-term viability of our facilities in Guanajuato,” the company explained.
Although the Japanese manufacturer expected the plant to produce some 200,000 units per year from its Corolla compact car model, it will instead produce about 100,000 Tacoma vans, a model whose sales have increased significantly in North America.
Toyota said Guanajuato will join Baja California and Texas as its “truck distribution center,” two facilities that “already experience maximum output levels.”
This change of plans is due to the transfer of Corolla’s production to the new plant that Toyota will build in the US along with the also Japanese Mazda Motor, a measure announced in August by both manufacturers.
The company, however, did not decide until October 13 the new investment and production details of the Guanajuato plant, which it seeks to “bring to fruition” to be “flexible, sustainable and highly competitive”, explained the company. spokesman.
For its part, the US plant will have the capacity to produce 300,000 vehicles a year, could be up and running in 2021, and create up to 4,000 jobs.
Toyota has formed a capital alliance with Mazda to build this plant and develop technology for electric cars, and both share the objective of strengthening its position in the North American market.
The company’s new investment in the United States was announced just after US President Donald Trump threatened the Japanese manufacturer with customs duties if it continued to build its new vehicle assembly plant in Mexico.