Tokyo, Japan – Toyota has announced it will end production of the Corolla and Tacoma at New United Motor Manufacturing Inc. (NUMMI) in March 2010, a joint venture of Toyota and GM, and shift production of those vehicles to wholly-owned Toyota facilities, including sourcing the Corolla from its plant in Ontario.
The NUMMI plant also produced the Pontiac Vibe, a sister vehicle to the Ontario-built Toyota Matrix. Production of that vehicle ended with General Motors’ decision earlier this year to discontinue the Pontiac brand.
After March 31, 2010, the Tacoma will be built in Toyota’s manufacturing facility in San Antonio, Texas. The Corolla will be sourced from Toyota’s plant in Cambridge, Ontario, as well as from Japan, to meet near-term demand. This will provide an uninterrupted supply of vehicles to dealers and customers in North America.
“After the decision by General Motors to withdraw from the NUMMI joint venture, Toyota conducted a thorough review of its alternatives in light of current and anticipated market conditions,” said Atsushi Niimi, executive vice-president of Toyota Motor Corporation. “Based on this review, we have determined that over the mid- to long-term, it just would not be economically viable to continue the production contract with NUMMI. This is most unfortunate, and we deeply regret having to take this action. We remain strongly committed to maintaining a substantial production presence in the U.S.A. and North America. To that end, we will consider moving additional Corolla production back to North America over time.”
Based in Fremont, California, NUMMI was established in 1984 as an independent joint venture of Toyota and General Motors to produce cars for both companies. In June, as part of GM’s bankruptcy reorganization, GM’s holdings in NUMMI were left among the assets to be liquidated. These developments resulted in Toyota’s decision to end its production contract with NUMMI next March.
The closure is expected to affect about 4,600 jobs.