The new Toyota Auris is officially “go” at Toyota’s UK car factory in Burnaston, Derbyshire. VIP guests joined company executives and Toyota members this morning (November 5th) to see the first cars off the production line, as these first pictures of today’s special event reveal.
Business Secretary Vince Cable represented the Government at the event and took the opportunity to applaud Toyota’s investment in manufacturing and jobs. Didier Leroy, President and CEO of Toyota Europe, reaffirmed the company’s commitment to UK manufacturing and paid tribute to the skills and dedication of workforce that is delivering new Auris.
Above: Katsunori Kojima, Didier Leroy and Vince Cable (l-r) inspect the new Toyota Auris
Dr Cable, also welcomed Toyota’s continued investment in its UK operations, which will see the new Auris Touring Sports estate car built at the plant from next year.
Didier Leroy, President and CEO Toyota Motor Europe, emphasised the importance of the UK in the company’s strategy for vehicle and engine production in Europe.
He said: “Toyota chose the UK as the location for its first manufacturing centre in Europe 20 years ago and has regularly made significant investments to develop TMUK’s operations and expand their capabilities.
“New Auris is at the heart of our European strategy and we expect it to strengthen our performance in the family car market. It is a unique proposition in its segment in being offered with petrol, diesel and full hybrid power in both the hatchback and new Touring Sports estate versions.
“Our colleagues at Burnaston and the Deeside engine plant continue to demonstrate they can deliver the superior quality and efficiency that are vital for building our presence in a highly competitive marketplace.
“With the benefit of our investment in new Auris, we are pleased that we are increasing our TMUK workforce and generating further new jobs among our suppliers.”
The decision to build the new Auris hatchback and Touring Sports estate car at TMUK has been supported by Toyota’s investment of around £185 million – about £85 million of which was allocated to the supply chain.
This takes Toyota’s UK investment total to more than £2.1 billion since it launched its operations here in 1992. The project is also boosting employment and already 800 temporary workers have been recruited by TMUK.
Tony Walker, TMUK Deputy Managing Director, said: “This is a great day for TMUK. The start of new Auris production at Burnaston is a testament to the on-going achievements of our members in helping create one of the finest vehicle manufacturing centres in the world. Toyota’s investment in our operations is a fantastic vote of confidence of what we can deliver, not just at TMUK, but within the wider British manufacturing sector too.