The new Mazda Toyota Manufacturing USA. joint venture assembly plant is expected to be completed and launch production in 2021.
The plant was going to produce the Toyota Corolla sedan, but the automaker said today it will make a new SUV instead, saying “the shift is in response to changing market demands and a growing consumer appetite for light trucks and SUVs, which are achieving record sales, including Toyota’s best-selling RAV4.”
In addition to the RAV4, Toyota produces the Highlander, Land Cruiser, 4Runner, Sequoia and CH-R SUVs and crossover vehicles.
Toyota said it will continue to produce the Corolla at its Blue Springs, Mississippi, plant.
Toyota has unveiled a number of SUV concept vehicles in the past few years. While concept vehicles rarely fully become production models, future production models do take design and functional cues from those concepts.
In 2017, Toyota unveiled the FT-4X concept at the New York International Auto Show that it said at the time was “a four-wheeled drive toolbox” aimed at “urbanites.”
Also in 2017, Toyota showed off its FT-AC concept at the Los Angeles Auto Show.
“FT-AC is perfect for those outdoor enthusiasts who want to dial up the adventure on their weekend getaways,” Jack Hollis, group vice president and general manager, Toyota division, said at the time. “No matter the roads, the activities or the people, FT-AC sparks authentic fun and conversation.”
Construction of MTMUS in Huntsville remains on schedule. Up to 4,000 new jobs will be created and hiring is underway. The plant will produce up to 300,000 vehicles annually.
Don’t blink or you’ll miss it! Check out this awesome drone footage of our future plant in Huntsville! Individuals interested in joining the excitement can search and apply for jobs at https://t.co/2l4NfWs6A1. pic.twitter.com/aE7qT2qc0Y
— Mazda Toyota (@mazda_toyota) June 26, 2019