Severe storms in the San Antonio, Texas area have forced Toyota to shut down operation at the Tundra/Tacoma plant for a few days. This could put a tight squeeze on sales volume.
Toyota is planning on expanding production at its San Antonio plant to six days a week to meet high dealer demand for the Tundra and Tacoma trucks.
In response to the recent media coverage surrounding local Texas governments not having Toyota’s in their fleet even though the Tundra/Tacoma plant is nearby, Toyota officials have decided to end all production in Texas. The plan is to move somewhere else, where Toyota can get mo’ respect.
According to an interview of Toyota North American COO Yoshi Inaba by Jason Buch of the San Antonio Express-News, Toyota will be increasing production at the San Antonio plant in the next year or so. This increased production is a result of two factors:
- Tundra sales are picking up. After a dismal 2009, Tundra sales in 2010 are up 26% year to date. This increase is significantly higher than GM’s 2010 YTD sales increase, which are only up about 11%. Ram sales are down 10% so far this year, and it remains to be seen if the Tundra can outsell the Ram 1500 this year. (See all of the latest truck sales figures on PickupTrucks.com)
- San Antonio now builds the Tacoma. Following the closure of the NUMMI plant, Toyota moved almost all of their Tacoma production to the same plant that builds the Tundra.
If sales continue to increase industry-wide, and if Toyota trucks continue to sell well (the Tacoma especially), it’s likely Toyota will have to hire more workers, pay more overtime, and eventually increase capacity of the plant. Obviously, this is good news for San Antonio…but it’s also good for the USA. After all, the Tundra is the most American pickup available today. Building more trucks in America is always a good thing.