Toyota Auris is to be first British-built hybrid

We’re breaking big news today with the official announcement from Toyota that it will build a full hybrid version of the Auris hatchback in the UK with production starting next year. It will be the first British-built hybrid car.

This ground-breaking car, featuring Toyota’s Hybrid Synergy Drive Technology, will be built at the Burnaston factory. Engines will be supplied by the Deeside facility in North Wales.

More details will be revealed at the Frankfurt motor show which starts on 15 September 2009, but we can confirm that production of the Auris hybrid will kick off in the middle of 2010, with sales launched before the end of the year. Rest assured we will be keeping you up-to-date with all the key developments in the project, as soon as we hear about them.

This is Toyota’s first full hybrid to be built in Europe, and the first hybrid to be built in the UK. This exciting declaration underlines Toyota’s commitment to expanding the range of low-emissions hybrid vehicles, and to car production in Britain.

Tadashi Arashima, President and CEO of Toyota Motor Europe, said: “Toyota has taken a significant step forward in ensuring that full hybrids become more accessible to a wider range of customers. Such efforts are crucial if we are to see more low-carbon vehicles on European Roads.

“Our decision to produce a full hybrid in the UK reflects both our confidence in the quality and commitment of the TMUK workforce and the strength of our long-standing partnership with the UK Government. Today’s announcement is positive for Toyota, our UK suppliers and the local communities here,” he said.

Friday’s announcement on the first British-built hybrid car also coincides with a visit to Burnaston by Lord Mandelson, the Government’s Business Secretary. Lord Mandelson welcomed this “forward-looking investment in Britain from a world class manufacturer”.

He added: “As part of our low carbon industrial strategy we set out to make Britain the best place in the world to develop low carbon vehicles. These commitments, backed by the formidable skills of the UK automotive workers, enable companies like Toyota to invest with confidence in low carbon car production in the UK. It demonstrates that the UK’s car industry is already making the low carbon transition.”

Auris has been built by Toyota Motor Manufacturing UK (TMUK) at Burnaston since 2007. The factory, Toyota’s first car plant in Europe, opened in 1992 and has produced more than 2.5 million vehicles, including Carina E, Corolla and Avensis, for sale in Europe and export to other markets worldwide.

Today TMUK employs more than 4,000 workers and has benefited from investment totalling more than £1.85 billion.

Details in this article were correct at the time of publication.

60 comments

  1. I’d hardly call it breaking as The Times reported this on 28th June!

    But it’s great news none the less, and it will be very interesting to see how the Hybrid Auris performs against the Prius, it’s price and how it sells in the wider market.

    1. Hi Andy, you’re right, this has been rumoured for some time. But it was finally confirmed last night. There’s a press conference at the Plant this morning and we’ll be looking for any further details to emerge.

  2. Great News! Not enough is said about Toyota’s UK manufacturing plant in Derbyshire where both Auris and New Avensis are built! Toyota supporting the UK economy – they should be really proud of this…

  3. This is great news.It Makes me proud to work for a company that it not only making sure its dealers have a product that will sell,But is also supporting British Jobs.Now is the time to also give us the hybrid Previa

  4. As a Toyota employee, at the Burnaston plant, this is great news. Following short time, pay cuts, volountary release and lots of uncertainty, its nice to have a bit of positive news that should secure our jobs.

  5. Hi Stephen – it definitely won’t make you regret ordering a new Prius. I had the chance to drive the new Prius recently and it’s just an incredible car, as well as looking fantastic. I’d say that the Prius will retain brilliant values too, being that it’s the name to beat and has a great level of spec as standard. Glad to see Toyota hybrid making such a step forward into the mainstream.

  6. I bought an Auris as Toyota employs British workers to make it! Imagine if the Police / Ambulance / NHS / Councils did the same ….. blue sky thinking i know!
    But will this new one be a petrol Hybrid again? Why not diesel?

    1. Hear hear!

      I know many support Ford and Vauxhall but how many of those vehicles are actually still made here in the UK? Very few I should imagine.

  7. Reuters press release mentions 19% less fuel and 17%
    less CO2 emissions than “standard” version…
    but which one are they comparing with?
    If it’s the current 1.3 Petrol one then that would be
    135g/km reduced by 17% to 112g/km.
    Don’t think that can be right, looking at the
    Prius figures.
    I wait with interest to hear some official figures.

    Also notice that current Auris has 55l tank vs Prius 45 so they can probably afford to reduce the tank size to make space for battery.

    Vic.

  8. Please can Toyota concentrate on economy this time rather than performance? Both the 2nd and 3rd generation Prius models have improved performance more than they have fuel economy.
    I drove a new Prius and it is a nice car but too complicated. All I want is a nice, straightforward car that will get me from a to b at 100mpg.. and I think you can deliver that now, if you really want to.

  9. Will the hybrid Auris be available as an import before it starts being built in UK? Or is mid-2010 its launch date? I’m likely to have to choose a new company car for February delivery so won’t be able to wait for mid-year. Thanks

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