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Toyota opens Mississippi plant to produce Corolla cars
Toyota began manufacturing its popular Corolla this month at Toyota Motor Manufacturing Mississippi (TMMMS), the company’s new $800 million plant outside of Tupelo, Mississippi.
The opening of the plant will have a big impact on the region, as nearly 2,000 workers stream in to the assembly factory that creates the world's all-time best-selling car.
By choosing a site in the U.S., Toyota also takes a step to protect itself from supply disruptions to its car leasing
dealers, such as the vehicle shortages triggered by the March tsunami that struck Japan. That disaster hobbled many of the automaker’s other parts and assembly plants, forcing vehicle lease
shoppers to wait through long delays and putting a deep dent in the company’s balance sheet.
The Tupelo factory is Toyota's 14th North American plant, and gives the company enormous manufacturing leverage, with a capacity to produce 15,000 vehicles per year.
"Building vehicles where we sell them helps us be even closer to our customers," said Toyota Motor Corporation president Akio Toyoda. "The U.S. market remains a key to Toyota’s overall success, and Toyota Mississippi will play an important role for us here."
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