Lexus to start ES 350 production at Kentucky plant in 2015

Move will generate 750 new jobs; Toyota will invest $360 million for new dedicated assembly line at Georgetown plant.

April 19, 2013

Erlanger, KYLexus will assemble its ES 350 sedan at Toyota Manufacturing, Kentucky (TMMK) starting in 2015, marking the first time a Lexus vehicle will be manufactured in the US.

The move will generate 750 new jobs. To support the new dedicated assembly line, Toyota will invest $360 million in the Georgetown plant.

About 50,000 Lexus vehicles a year will be produced, bringing the plant’s total annual production capacity to more than 550,000 vehicles.

Production of the ES 350 at the Georgetown plant is the latest step in Toyota’s continuing strategy to assemble vehicles in the markets where its customers live. Over the past 17 months, the company has announced plans to increase production capacity at its plants in Mississippi, Indiana, West Virginia and Canada, reflecting a cumulative investment of approximately $2 billion that has created more than 4,000 new jobs.

Established in January 1986, TMMK is Toyota’s largest manufacturing facility outside of Japan, employing approximately 6,600 people. The plant currently assembles the Toyota Camry, Camry Hybrid, Avalon, Avalon Hybrid and Venza and manufactures 4-cylinder and V6 engines.

The ES is Lexus’s bestselling sedan, with approximately 58,850 vehicles sold in North America in 2012 — including 56,158 in the US  Projections for Toyota’s production volume at the company’s Kyushu plant in Japan have not changed.

©The Canadian Press