Section 4. Construction of the Automotive Department Assembly Plant and Koromo Plant
Item 1. Construction of the Automotive Department Assembly Plant: Staged Expansion of Production Capacity
Kiichiro Toyoda expanded automobile manufacturing capacity in stages, as had been done for automatic looms. The process started with the construction of a prototype plant, followed by the production of prototypes of the Model A1 passenger car and the Model G1 truck, construction of an automobile assembly plant, and the expansion of passenger car and truck production. When Toyoda Automatic Loom Works, Ltd. was licensed under the Automotive Manufacturing Industries Law, a plan to construct the Koromo Plant as a full-scale automobile production plant was developed.
In order to expand automobile production facilities, Toyoda Automatic Loom Works increased its capital from three million yen to six million on July 9, 1935, with Toyoda Boshoku Sho underwriting the entire increase. Toyoda Automatic Loom Works began expanding production facilities when the quality of the Model G1 truck stabilized and production targets of five units per day and 150 units per month were set in January 1936. The scale of production went beyond that of a prototype plant, and this marked the first step towards full-scale mass production.
The automobile assembly plant was constructed in Kariya-cho, located about one kilometer to the northeast of Toyoda Automatic Loom Works. Approximately 48,400 square meters of the Chuo Spinning & Weaving Company site was leased, and construction was completed in May 1936. The plant included a body assembly shop, body painting shop, frame assembly shop, chassis and body assembly shop, plating shop, assembly part storage site, service part warehouse, and other facilities. When the Koromo Plant was completed in 1938, the automobile assembly plant was renamed the Kariya Plant.1
Following completion in 1927, the Toyoda Automatic Loom Works plant was expanded several times, and when Toyota Motor Co., Ltd. was spun off in 1937, it was manufacturing looms, steel, and automobiles. The central portion of the plant included spinning and weaving machinery manufacturing facilities and a steelworks, while the automobile-related manufacturing facilities were located to the north in the No. 3 Ironworks (suspensions), half of the No. 4 Foundry, the No. 3 Foundry, and the machine tool plant and to the south in the automobile body shop (formerly a prototype plant), automobile engine shop (also a former prototype plant), and the electrical equipment shop. These automobile-related facilities were referred to as the manufacturing plant and were divided north to south. The various components manufactured there were transported to the automobile assembly shop where they were assembled into trucks and passenger cars. This arrangement did not allow for efficient production activities.2