With a historic groundbreaking and producing more than a half-million engines, Huntsville’s Toyota officials are marking 2018 as a landmark year.
In November, the automaker and Mazda broke ground on the Mazda Toyota Manufacturing plant, a jointly owned-and-operated automotive production plant that will have the capacity to build 300,000 vehicles a year, beginning in 2021. Mazda Toyota Manufacturing, U.S.A., is expected to create 4,000 jobs, with a $1.6 billion investment split by the two companies.
The plant, in western Huntsville in Limestone County,will build Toyota’s Corolla, whose all-new 2020 model was unveiled in November in California, and Mazda’s yet-to-be revealed crossover model.
Also last year, the Toyota engine plant in north Huntsville poduced approximately 630,000 engines for RAV4, Highlander, Tacoma, Tundra and Sequoia vehicles. These engines powered one-third of Toyota vehicles built in the U.S.
Currently the 1,400-employee facility is building about 2,600 engines per day – five times as many engines since starting production in 2003. The plant’s 6 millionth engine was built in August.
Toyota Alabama continues to be the only Toyota plant globally to build 4-cylinder, V6 and V8 engines under one roof.
In September, the plant launched an advanced 4-cylinder engine line to produce next-generation engines as part of the Toyota New Global Architecture platform. TNGA will increase fuel efficiency while providing responsive handling and a more stable and comfortable feel while driving. It also provides a more flexible production environment that allows Toyota to better respond to changing market demands.
The $106 million TNGA project increased total plant investment to $1 billion.
In 2018, Toyota Alabama supported more than 40 local non-profit organizations by investing more than $700,000 in the areas of education, mobility, environmental, human services and diversity. In addition, engine and vehicle donations were made to local technical schools to support workforce development efforts and promote careers in manufacturing.
To date, $10 million has been donated to support local non-profits and education programs in North Alabama.