Toyota and Mazda made a major financial announcement in recent days, as the two Japanese automakers confirmed they are pouring another $830 million into building their new joint assembly plant in Alabama, in the United States. The automakers have previously anted up $1.6 billion to build the facility.
The companies’ joint announcement explains that the new money will go to improving the production process and allow for adapting the designs of the models built at the new plant.
The automakers first announced its plan to build the factory in January 2018. The plant will produce an as-yet-unspecified utility model that will be offered, in distinct form, by both companies. For the moment, neither automaker has divulged the identity of the models, but we do know they will be all-new. The Mazda crossover will be specific to the North American market and should go into production in 2021. For its part, Toyota’s original idea was to build Corollas at the plant, but it has since changed course and will make a new crossover model there as well.
The factory will be able to produce up to 300,000 vehicles per year, with production evenly split between the two brands. It’s expected that up to 4,000 workers will be employed at the plant, and in fact 600 have already been hired. Applications for jobs will be accepted as of later this year. In a bit of good news, the announcement made no mention of any coronavirus-related delays in the construction of the new plant.
The next bit of news regarding the Alabama factory will of course have to do with the identity of the models to be built there by both Toyota and Mazda.