In 26 years, from 1988 up to now, the Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky plant in Georgetown has built ten million vehicles - nearly enough for every citizen of Seoul, Korea or the nation of Hungary. The first car to roll off the line back when the claymation California Raisins were singing old Marvin Gaye hits and everybody wanted to know Who Framed Roger Rabbit? was a white Camry. The ten-millionth car to roll off the line among the Avalons and Venzas also produced there: a white Camry Hybrid
The ES is Lexus' top-selling sedan, but the Japanese luxury marque has never manufactured it outside of Japan. In fact, Lexus has never made any cars in the United States, one of its largest markets worldwide. But that's about to change.
Lexus may have had another big reason – in addition to the financial incentives potentially worth up to $146.5 million that Kentucky offered – to move ES production to its Georgetown, KY plant. The ES has always been built in Japan, and a report at TheDetroitBureau.com claims that the Kyushu facility will be tooling up to build a new model thought to be a compact hybrid crossover expected to go on sale next year. While ES300h production would remain in Japan, shedding 50,000 units of
Following Thursday's report, Toyota has confirmed that production of the Lexus ES will move to its Georgetown, KY assembly plant starting in 2015. To accommodate the extra 50,000 units of capacity that the ES represents, Toyota will be investing $360 million in the plant and hiring 750 new workers.