RAV4 production at Toyota Motor Corp.’s Woodstock, Ontario, assembly plant will be increased from 150,000 vehicles to 200,000 vehicles annually, requiring an investment of about $80 million. The Canadian unit of Toyota confirmed this report. It stated that a total of 400 new jobs will be created starting now until it is implemented early next year.
Ray Tanguay, chairman of Toyota's Canadian manufacturing unit, released a statement to say that the company is pleased with the high RAV4 sales in North America. Sales projections for this year continue to rise for the auto industry. However, RAV4 sales in the U.S. dropped 5% in the first two months of the year compared to the same period last year.
Toyota sold 132,237 RAV4 units in the U.S. last year, standing for a 23% drop. The challenges that Toyota and other foreign automakers face include losses from the soaring yen and from the natural calamities that were experienced last year. Toyota builds the Toyota Corolla, Toyota Matrix and the Lexus RX 350 in Canada. It has 6,500 workers in Canada, with two manufacturing plants in Cambridge and one plant in Woodstock.