Expansion of facilities at TMMK, TMMC

From the second half of the 1980s, Toyota's local production in North America steadily grew under the charge of the joint venture company New United Motor Manufacturing, Inc. (NUMMI) and the Toyota-owned companies Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Kentucky, Inc. (TMMK) and Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Canada, Inc. (TMMC). However, automotive demand grew rapidly from the mid-1990s, raising the fear of insufficient supply capacity. To address this concern, the TMMK plant was expanded and production of the Avalon (a derivative of the Camry) was commenced in 1994. Following this, production of the Sienna minivan began in 1997, based on the Camry platform. However, as introduction of the following-generation Sienna, which was under development at the time, required a major conversion of production lines, it was decided to shift production of the Sienna to a new plant in Indiana and TMMK was converted into a specialist passenger car plant. Following this move, TMMK further enhanced production of Camry-based passenger car models, in 2003 commencing production of the Solara model (a derivative of the Camry) that was already being manufactured at TMMC, and starting production of the Camry Hybrid in 2006.

TMMC began construction of a plant for producing Corolla engines in 1994 and commenced assembly of 1.6-liter and 1.8-liter engines in 1995. One reason behind this move was the Canadian government's announcement of its intention to abolish customs duties on components used in local production of engines and transmission systems. In 1995, Toyota created the "New Global Business Plan" in response to trade frictions, and, as part of this plan, began construction of a new plant (the North Plant) at TMMC in the same year. The plant opened in 1997, producing new-model Corolla vehicles. Facilities at the existing plant were also upgraded and charged with producing the new-model Solara. These moves focused production of Corolla sedans for the North American market to the New United Motor Manufacturing, Inc. (NUMMI) and TMMC sites.

Following this, in 2003 TMMC became the first plant outside Japan to manufacture the Lexus brand, beginning production of the RX 330 Lexus SUV. Furthermore, in 2005 Toyota announced plans to build a second TMMC plant in Woodstock, Ontario, in response to growth of the SUV market. The new plant began production of the RAV4 in November 2008.

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