• Nov 22nd 2006 at 1:34PM
  • 42

Last Friday the first two Tundra pickups rolled off the line at Toyota's new production facility in San Antonio, Texas. The facility, called Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Texas, took three years to build and cost $1.28 billion. At full capacity it can pump out 200,000 Tundras a year, a rate at which Toyota hopes the plant will be operating sometime next year. The facility also houses 21 suppliers who produce components for the Tundra on-site. Toyota's president Katsuaki Watanabe and Texas Governor Rick Perry were on hand to witness the ceremony that marks Toyota's entry into the North American auto industry's biggest market.

With a capacity of only 200,000 units per year, it's not likely the Tundra will put a huge dent in the sales of its main competitors, the Ford F-150 and Chevy Silverado/GMC Sierra, both of which sell more than three to four times that many units in a year. Still, the arrival of a competitive full-size truck from Toyota, the current can't-miss automaker, is a big deal, and it's no coincidence this manufacturing facility was built right in the heart of Texas truck country.

Check out more pics of the facility's inner workings after the jump.

[Source: Toyota]


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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 8 Years Ago
      Every truck and van Toyota sells here is made here, something none of the "Big Three" (oops Dodge is owned by the Germans) can say. 99% of Toyota truck owners I've spoken to over the past 25 years who've also owned domestic have agreed the Toyota is superior. Perhaps all these hundreds of drivers who've OWNED BOTH, as well as Consumer Reports (one of the world's most respected research companies), AND the Kelly Blue Book are wrong, but go ask a service manager who sells both Toyota and whatever other "American" badged truck what has less problems.
      • 8 Years Ago
      "And the pussy ass French-Canadians are going to make the new Camaro."

      Uh, no. The Quebec GM plant has been torn down years ago, so the new Camaro will not be "pussy ass" made. That's one of the stupidest comment I heard on autoblog for a while. This comment is, indeed, racist agaist French-Canadians like me.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Re #9 nist

      You must be the biggest idiot on this blog bashing the Mexicans and the Canadians......

      I am a french Canadian dude and just to let you know ass hole. Canada has being making cars and truck for 100 years......

      You mention giving a chance to Toyota. What about giving a chance to the domestic brands.

      Why not I ask? because it's cool to drive a Toyota...
      The initial quality is bull shit from that Compagnie they have being hiding there recalls for years...

      You should give a chance to the new Silverado instead of that piece of shit Toyota.

      And be they way you don't see us Canadian bashing you yanks and red neck... So go to hell nist you do not represent your country with any pride.
      • 8 Years Ago
      I think chris should do a little more homework on his facts. Just because it has the name toyota it was designed, and built right in the good ol' USA. I've worked in the car industry for many years and it's sad to say that the toyota's have a far superior quality to just about anything I've seen built by ford, chevy, dodge. Besides a lot of those are built in Mexico.
      • 8 Years Ago
      The Tundra is a half ton truck, not a 1 ton... Yes, yes,yes. And the '07 Chevy 1500 has a base 285 hp eng. and can tow ONLY 8700 lbs. HOWEVER, if we are to compare full size pickup lineups, A 3500 silverado classic (not a GMT900) 1 ton can tow 16,700 lbs. The tundra DOESN'T EVEN OFFER THIS!!!! That is strike one against it. No diesel Strike two! No dually for those who need it? Strike three!!!!
      • 8 Years Ago
      oh c'mon Chris, will you not even give Toyota a CHANCE to impress you?

      Are you afraid to test drive the new 07 Tundra? Or do you just have an intense prejudice against "currency manipulating midgets"?

      On a side note, what I am mad about is the outsourcing of the Fusion assembly to Mexico down south. Can you believe that? Smelly, wetbacks are making the Fusion. Sickening. And the pussy ass French-Canadians are going to make the new Camaro. The world is coming to an end.
      • 8 Years Ago
      I'll be the lone voice to like the new Tundra. The full-size truck segment is all about brawn. The Tundra shows that. The Silverado is conservative, whereas the Tundra at least tries to look different. It's the same way the Honda Ridgeline stands out from the Ford Rangers and Chevy Colorados. Toyota hopes to sell two hundred units per year; I don't. We don't need to have millions of new full-size pickups making 15 mpg on the road.

      I think the Japanese have the best mid-size pickups. The Honda Ridgeline, hate to admit it, was the best mid-sizer out of the bunch. It was roomy, strong, and had lots of utility. It was wel-thought-out. A little big, but nice. The Tacoma is far superior to the Colorado/Canyon in road manners and interior. (The Ford Ranger and Mazda B series are jokes.) Of the American mid-size pickups, though, the Dakota V-8 ranks No. 1 on my list, just out of personal preference.
      • 8 Years Ago
      The Japanese can't make a truck worth a damn to save their lives. What makes them think that Americans will buy it, even if it's made in Texas?
      • 8 Years Ago
      42. My husbands blood is Ford blue so I drive Fords. I am impressed to see Toyota bringing jobs here and notice that they have chosen non union territory. They know how to run a business without leeches (unions) draining their profits
      Tina, there is more than one reason this is being built in Texas- If Georgie Porgie has his way(guest worker program), all you'll see is Mexicans running across the border, building those trucks, and then running back w/ their $6/hr in their fists. And then Toyota will be running all the way to the bank, calling it "an American made truck". Be careful what you wish for.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Funny that Chris should call them 'midgets'. Fact is that of all the Crew Cab-style 1/2 ton trucks on the market today (with the exception of the overpriced Mega Cab), a 'Japanese' truck has the most interior room.

      I am looking to replace my Titan with a new truck, and found that it's still the truck to get for a crew of 'non-midgets' like me (6'4"). It seems Nissan has a better understanding of what it takes to transport a crew than any of the US makers:
      - RAM Quad Cab: backseat is a joke
      - Ford F-150: cramped back seat, low headroom
      - the new Chevy/GMC trucks: see comment for RAM
      - Toyota Tundra: not a Crew Cab to be had for a while :-(

      The US makers earn the most on the 1/2 ton trucks, and that market looks like it's going the way of the sedan market 20 years ago, leaving them only with the heavy-duty market.

      Perhaps that could be the former big 3's survival strategy: pull out of the consumer market, focus in commercial fleets...

      • 8 Years Ago
      people keep talking how much american trucks are the best and toyota trucks sucks ,what a joke ,i am a carpenter in maryland and i drive a 2002 silverado so call work truck and that thing is a joke .if you get stuck in mud forget it .step on the gas and that thing just wines .it is way too lazy to be a real truck .it has been in the shop five times so far with different problems .try warming that thing up in the cold morning .it needs atleast 20 minutes for some warm air and im tired of driving with a cold ass steering wheel .the other carpenter crew has a ford f250 ,the company already had to replace the whole body bacause with the cap on it ,it sag 4" now they added all kind of braces under the cap ,and that is build ford tuff,yea right ,it just got out of the shop for blowing its third spark plug right out the block ,i could go on all day about these so call real trucks ,i just dont have the time ,it it almost imposible for toyota to be any worst than any of these P O S ,
      • 8 Years Ago
      In case you guys missed it, I will post my apology again:

      "My apologies to Elvis Bertrand and Y2breeze. I did not mean to offend our beloved northern neighbors. I was just poking fun at Chris. Again, I'm sorry for all the emotional harm that I might've caused.

      Actually, I am very happy that you guys are building the Camaro in part because....you are guys ARE building the new Camaro and that's damn cool.

      Again, not a racist. ;)"
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