Lexus RX manufacturing at the Cambridge plant in Canada is set to receive a big boost after a major announcement this morning:
Toyota Motor Manufacturing Canada Inc. (TMMC) announced today that it will invest more than $100 million and hire approximately 400 employees to increase Lexus RX production at its Cambridge, Ontario facility.
Overall Lexus RX capacity will increase by 30,000 vehicles to 104,000 units, including 15,000 RX450h vehicles, the hybrid electric version of the popular Lexus. The investment will take Toyota’s annual production capacity in Canada to 500,000 units.
Toyota is targeting early 2014 for expanded Lexus production.
The Canadian plant is the only factory outside of Japan to produce Lexus vehicles, and has been manufacturing RXs since 2003.
Automotive News has some additional insight into the story:
Toyota produced about 81,000 RX SUVs at Miyata [factory in Southern Japan] in 2011.
The total number of vehicles produced at the Miyata plant would likely be unchanged, as other models would be made instead of the RX, said the source, who declined to be named because he was not authorized to speak about the matter.
Toyota is set to make an announcement on the matter soon, the source said.
Shifting 30,000 units out of Japan brings an opportunity to use that output for another model — whether that’s an existing model or something brand-new is where it gets interesting.
(Of course, it might be something as simple as increasing ES production — we do know that Lexus is forecasting an additional 20,000 ES worldwide sales.)