Ann Arbor, Michigan – Toyota Technical Center, a division of Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing North America Inc., has announced the establishment of the Toyota Research Institute of North America (TRI-NA). Toyota plans to spend US$100 million during the next four years on advanced research activity in North America, using existing facility space at the Toyota Technical Center Ann Arbor campus in Michigan.
TRI-NA’s goal is to accelerate advanced research on energy and environment, safety, and mobility infrastructure. It will be directed by Dr. Noboru Kikuchi, a professor of mechanical engineering at the University of Michigan and a director of Toyota Central Research & Development Laboratories in Japan. TRI-NA will initially employ 35 researchers and administration staff, and plans to add ten researchers in 2008 and an additional 20 by 2010.
“Creating the Toyota Research Institute is the next step to strengthen Toyota’s advanced research function throughout North America and to discover cutting-edge technologies for sustainable mobility,” Dr. Kikuchi said.