November 01, 2023 – Toyota, on Tuesday, announced an $8 billion expansion of its electric vehicle battery manufacturing facility in North Carolina, USA, along with the addition of approximately 3,000 new job positions, in a move to accelerate the electrification of its product lineup.
Toyota aims to offer electrification options for all its vehicle models by 2025. This latest investment will bring Toyota’s total commitment to the factory to approximately $13.9 billion, creating more than 5,000 job opportunities.
Traditional automotive manufacturers such as Ford and General Motors have been increasing their electric vehicle production to narrow the gap with market leader Tesla. However, these Detroit-based companies have scaled back their investment plans following expensive new contract agreements with the United Auto Workers (UAW) union.
Toyota has not disclosed specific investment details at this time, and the company was not immediately available for further comment.
In contrast to other global automakers, Toyota has historically focused on hybrid and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles, rather than purely electric vehicles. However, as the world’s largest automaker, Toyota announced a shift in strategy earlier this year, planning to commercialize advanced battery technology and adopt Tesla’s pioneered casting technology.
Other companies, including Samsung SDI, Panasonic, and StellantisNV, the parent company of Chrysler, also plan to establish facilities in the United States and build their own battery factories.
Toyota’s factory in North Carolina is expected to commence operations in 2025, making it the company’s first-ever automotive battery plant worldwide.
The facility will feature six battery production lines, with four dedicated to supporting hybrid models like the Prius, and two for pure electric vehicles.
North Carolina is becoming a major hub for electric vehicle and battery manufacturing, with multiple companies, including Redwood Materials and Vietnam’s Vinfast, planning new investments in the region.
Following the news of Toyota’s increased investment, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper expressed on Tuesday, “The transition to a clean energy economy in North Carolina will bring higher-paying job opportunities that will support our families and communities in the decades to come.”
Indian company Epsilon Advanced Materials announced last week that they plan to invest $650 million in building a battery factory in North Carolina. The factory is scheduled to start production in 2026 and may ultimately supply batteries for as many as 1.1 million electric vehicles in the U.S. market.