WASHINGTON — Toyota Motor Corp said Wednesday it will build a new sport utility vehicle at its $1.6 billion joint venture assembly plant in Alabama rather than produce Corolla cars. The largest Japanese automaker announced in January 2018 it would build the factory in Alabama in a joint venture with Mazda. Toyota said the shift is due to "a growing consumer appetite for light trucks and SUVs." Mazda announced in February 2019 that it would build a new SUV at the plant. Toyota said it still expects the plan to start production in 2021. Construction remains on schedule, and hiring has begun. The plant could create up to 4,000 new jobs and build 300,000 vehicles annually. Corolla production will remain at Toyota's plant in Blue Springs, Miss.
The Toyota/Mazda factory sweepstakes appear to be nearing a conclusion as Bloomberg and Automotive News are reporting the location has been narrowed down to either North Carolina or Alabama. The joint venture plant worth $1.6 billion would add 4,000 jobs to whichever state lands it. To even be considered, Toyota and Mazda have reportedly sought a $1 billion incentive package from interested states in the form of tax breaks and other support.
To even be considered, Toyota and Mazda have reportedly sought a $1 billion incentive package from interested states in the form of tax breaks and other support.At least 15 states had apparently been jockeying for the factory, including Mississippi, Illinois, Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Texas and South Carolina.
Rich Salmon of Grand Bay, AL, has won Plug In America's #PIA100K contest commemorating the 100,000th plug-in vehicle sold since introduction of the latest generation of highway-capable plug-in vehicles more than two years ago. Plug In America awarded Salmon a new ClipperCreek Level 2 charging station plus $300 toward its installation, both generously donated by ClipperCreek. Salmon was selected to represent the approximate buyer of the 100,000th EV with his recent purchase of a Mitsubishi iMiEV.