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Michigan has been begging for good news from the auto industry lately, and the Great Lakes state got some from a company that was once considered public enemy number one. Toyota has officially opened a brand new $187 million technical center in York Township that will provide 400 more jobs to the beleaguered state while giving the Japanese automaker additional manpower to develop more new vehicles for North America. The York Township facility will compliment the 700-person Toyota research and development center in Ann Arbor that has been operational since 1997. The Ann Arbor facility has performed R&D duties for various vehicle including the Avalon, Tundra, Sienna and upcoming Venza. The added jobs at the new facility only represents a small portion of the thousands of jobs Michigan residents have lost over the past decade, but having an automotive force like Toyota investing in your state is a very good start, indeed.
[Source: Toyota]


Toyota Opens Second Facility In Michigan
$187 million York Township site expands Toyota's engineering, safety testing capability

October 9, 2008 - York Township, MI - Toyota Technical Center (TTC) celebrated the grand opening of its new engineering and safety testing facilities here today with Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm and U.S. Congressman John Dingell, as well as several hundred government officials, community leaders, suppliers and Toyota team members.

TTC, a division of Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing North America (TEMA), already has a site in Ann Arbor. With the expansion in York Township, TTC is adding 400 new jobs and will boost its employment to 1,100 by 2010. "Toyota's investment of $187 million to advance research and development demonstrates our commitment to the North American automotive industry," said Shigeki Terashi, TTC president. "TTC has been conducting R&D activity in Michigan for over 30 years and recognizes Southeast Michigan as the center for automotive R&D in North America."

"Continued commitment and investments by Toyota are important as we maintain our efforts to diversify our economy and create jobs here in Michigan," Governor Granholm said. "The Toyota Technical Center is a huge win for Michigan and our workers – our reputation as the automotive capital of the world brought Toyota here, and we will continue to attract R&D and advanced manufacturing jobs because of our global leadership in automotive research and development."

Toyota (NYSE:TM) established Toyota Technical Center (TTC) in 1977 in Ann Arbor, Mich. TTC is engaged in engineering design, prototype building, vehicle evaluation and engineering, materials engineering, powertrain tuning and design, regulatory affairs and advanced technical research. TTC has developed the Avalon, Sienna, Solara, Tundra and Venza vehicles for the North American market. For more information about Toyota, visit www.toyota.com.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 6 Years Ago
      Kinda scary with the news one post below. Trying to be optimistic is tough now a days.
      • 6 Years Ago
      This is the same facility in Michigan. Not a second one. This is just the Toyota PR machine getting a second or third newspaper hit from the same little tech center they are building.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Its in the same location but its second site and a $200 million investment in the 700-acre complex for the campus.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Good! The more Toyotas being built, the better.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Its good Toyota is doing this, but seriously its absolutely the wrong time. Productions numbers for all models will likely drop dramatically during this economic downturn. . . perhaps they think the economy will rebound soon. . . I hope, but perhaps they have more insight.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Thank you sammy, I was waiting for someone to bash Toyota.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Why is this good? I know it means a few more jobs right now, but the reason th U.S. automakers are in trouble right now is because they have lost market share to Toyota, Honda, and Nissan. Everyone needs to stop buying foreign and keep our money in the U.S. economy.
        • 6 Years Ago
        "Everyone needs to stop buying foreign and keep our money in the U.S. economy."

        Really? It's this manner of thinking that has trouble US automakers for decades. The thought that we should buy American simply because its American is pathetic. Build a quality car that rivals that of Lexus, Toyota, Honda, then maybe US automakers can begin to recover some of that market share. But buying American "just because." Come on George. That's Economics 101, and people arent drinking that kool-aid anymore.
        • 6 Years Ago
        It's called the free market economy. You Americans should try it sometime.
      • 6 Years Ago
      why cant people just by happy that there adding 400 new jobs? who cares if its a new or old facility? Stop bashing these companies. If people stop buying cars from Toyota then this will impact the us economy just as much... thousands of jobs would be lost as Toyota does build many cars right here in the US...
        • 6 Years Ago
        Agreed. Be happy for the new jobs.

        A day without mindless bashing on Autoblog is like a day without the sun rising.
      • 6 Years Ago
      It is new facility, not old... it was site of mental institution previously, and now tech center that employs mostly highly paid engineers...
      • 6 Years Ago
      Very Nice!
      • 6 Years Ago
      But the unionizers need not apply - they can work at GM, F, or Ch instead.
        • 6 Years Ago
        I have actually done work at TTC in Ann Arbor as a supplier's engineer, let me tell you this:
        *Engineers are only part of the staff, there are cost planners and other people as well as testing and validation engineers and works.
        *CAD designers are union at the other automakers as are the people who set up and run tests, but not at Toyota.
        *The vehicles that have been designed at TTC are mostly designed there and some work is done in Japan. The vehicles listed above, as well as another upcoming vehicle were all designed and engineered at TTC.
        *The local adaptation engineering is actually done in Japan.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Um - Engineers (that is who work at R&D centers numbskull) are not in the union at any OEM. Toyota does the vast majority of their R&D in Japan - not in any other market they are in. The local R&D facilities are there to modify their Japanese designs to conform to local regulations - with rare exceptions like vehicles that are not sold in Japan (full size pickups and SUV's).
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