Toyota Motor Co. plans to move production of hybrid version of the Toyota Highlander from Japan to an assembly plant in Princeton, Indiana the company's top American executive has announced.
Yoshi Inaba, president and chief operation officer of Toyota Motor North America, told the Economic Club of Chicago, the move will create 400 additional jobs at the Japanese automaker's manufacturing plant in Princeton. In addition, Toyota plans to spend $400 million to upgrade the IIndiana plant for hybrid production.
"That's great news for this region, for our American customers and for the US economy because every auto job creates three and a half spin-off jobs," Inaba said.
"Even better we plan to export some of those Highlander's to other countries." he said. "Our exports of 'Made In America to 21 countries have topped 100,000 vehicles and we are just beginning to export American Camry sedans and Sienna minivans to South Korea.
Inaba also noted in his speech the auto industry is making a strong comeback and has become an important engine for economic growth in the US. "In fact, the automobile industry is responsible for 8 million American jobs and he industry expects to add 150,000 new jobs over the next four years," Inaba added.
"The auto industry'scurrent $500 billion payroll ranks only below the Defense Department and Social Security. So we make a tremendous positive impact on thi country," he added.