Toyota has announced plans to export the American-made Corolla south, to 18 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean by 2014. The move follows statements made to The Wall Street Journal by Toyota's South American leader, Steve St. Angelo, that spoke to Toyota's resolve in emerging American markets.
In a move to reduce the impact of the yen's strength against the dollar, Toyota is planning to finish off its recently-built plant in Tupelo, Mississippi. The plant was started way back in 2006 but had been put on indefinite hold last December. At this time, only the building shell has been completed and there is no actual car-building equipment installed. According to the Nikkei newspaper in Japan (via Automotive News), production is slated to begin by March 31, 2011.
Sluggish market conditions in the United States are the reason Toyota Motor Corp. is slowing down the launch of its new Highlander crossover plant in Tupelo, Mississippi. Originally scheduled to open in late 2009 with production at 150,000 vehicles per year, Toyota will instead begin production in May 2010 with an expected reduced annual output of 120,000 units a year. Of course, that number will increase if U.S. market conditions improve.
As expected, Toyota officially announced its plans to build the Highlander in northeast Mississippi. The company will invest $1.8 billion in the project and initially employ 2,000 workers. Toyota officials, along with Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour (speaking in photo), made the announcement this morning at a press conference in Tupelo, Miss.