Toyota to invest £240m in upgrading UK plant
Toyota is investing more than £240m to upgrade its Burnaston plant in Derbyshire to enable production of vehicles using its new global platform.
The investment programme also includes up to £21.3m support from the UK government for training, research and development and further enhancements of the plant’s environmental performance.
Toyota’s Burnaston factory and its engine plant in Deeside, North Wales, were established in 1989 as Toyota’s first major production sites in Europe. The plants currently employ over 3,000 people.
The carmaker said the investment will improve plant competitiveness and promote UK supply chain efficiencies, and forms part of a global programme to upgrade its manufacturing sites to produce vehicles based on the new Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA) platform.
Globally, Toyota currently uses more than 100 modified platforms and sub-platforms but the Toyota New Global Architecture means that five layouts can cover the whole range, from compact sports cars to SUVs. Models already built on the new platform include the new Prius and Prius Plug-in and the CH-R crossover and by 2020, the majority of Toyota’s global models will be built using TNGA platforms.
Dr Johan van Zyl, president and CEO of Toyota Motor Europe, said: “Our investment demonstrates that, as a company, we are doing all we can to raise the competitiveness of our Burnaston plant in Derbyshire.”
However, in reference to the UK’s Brexit plans, he warned: “Continued tariff-and-barrier free market access between the UK and Europe that is predictable and uncomplicated will be vital for future success.”
Business and Energy Secretary Greg Clark commented on the investment, saying: “Our automotive sector is one of the most productive in the world and Toyota’s decision to invest £240m upgrading its Burnaston plant is a further boost to the UK auto sector. I also welcome the prospect of investment to take Toyota New Global Architecture into the supply chain.
“As we prepare to leave the EU, this Government is committed through our Industrial Strategy to ensuring the UK remains one of the best places in the world to do business and we are able to help businesses seize on economic opportunities.”
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