Ford Escape PHEV prototype – Click above for high-res image gallery
Toshiba announced yesterday that it will be expanding a factory in Houston, TX to add production of electric traction motors for hybrid and plug-in vehicles. The first customer for the new motors will be Ford, starting in 2012 when its next-generation hybrid system debuts. Ford has decided to bring production of its hybrid transaxles in-house for the new system after relying on Japanese supplier Aisin Seiki since the launch of the Escape hybrid five years ago.
Toshiba will be supplying the motors for integration into the transmissions that will be built at a Ford factory in Michigan. The new hybrid generation will be used for both non-plug and plug-in vehicles that will be built at the Wayne, MI assembly plant as well as for the European-market C-Max hybrid that will be built in Valencia, Spain in 2013.
Toshiba to Build Drive Motors for Electrified Vehicles in the U.S.
- Wins Major Contract from Ford Motor Company -
HOUSTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Toshiba Corporation (TOKYO:6502) will expand manufacturing capacity at its plant in Houston, Texas for production of high-performance drive motors for hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs), plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) and electric vehicles (EVs).
"We welcome Toshiba's decision to locate this new production in the United States"
The production will be Toshiba's first overseas manufacturing base for automotive propulsion motors which are currently produced in Mie Prefecture, Japan. The decision follows the awarding of a major contract to supply drive motors for hybrid and plug-in hybrid vehicles for Ford Motor Company.
"Toshiba recognizes the importance of localizing production within North America to ensure long term growth and make a commitment to the North American market," said Shinichiro Akiba, President, Toshiba International Corporation, a Houston-based Toshiba Group company that manufactures and markets motors and industrial equipment, and the base for this expansion program.
"We welcome Toshiba's decision to locate this new production in the United States," said Sherif Marakby, Director, Electrification Programs and Engineering, Ford Motor Company. "This key technology will help build U.S. capacity and supply of components to further enable vehicle electrification in the North American market."
Toshiba will begin construction for the expanded capacity in January 2011 in Houston, Texas, on the site of Toshiba International Corporation. Production of the automotive motors would begin in 2012.
As the automotive industry moves toward a new generation of environmentally friendly vehicles including hybrids, plug-in hybrids and battery electric vehicles, Toshiba is promoting advances in essential automotive technologies, from dedicated on-board control systems to batteries and Intelligent Traffic Systems. The company's development of key components for HEVs, PHEVs and EVs, including inverters and drive motors, is an essential part of Toshiba's strategy in growing this promising business.
Electrified vehicles are attracting increased attention and growing levels of investment from the automotive industry. Toshiba estimates that the global market for motors for such vehicles, including hybrids, plug-in hybrids and battery electric vehicles, will grow from 50 billion yen in fiscal year 2009 to 1 trillion yen in fiscal year 2020.
The Houston location will allow Toshiba to increase its marketing of automotive systems and components in the United States, establish closer contact and collaboration with automobile manufacturers, and allow auto companies to increase local procurement of key components.
Toshiba is a world leader and innovator in pioneering high technology, a diversified manufacturer and marketer of advanced electronic and electrical products spanning information & communications systems; digital consumer products; electronic devices and components; power systems, including nuclear energy; industrial and social infrastructure systems; and home appliances.
Toshiba was founded in 1875, and today operates a global network of more than 740 companies, with 204,000 employees worldwide and annual sales surpassing 6.3 trillion yen.