Toyota plans to invest an additional $8 billion and hire an additional 3,000 employees at its electric battery manufacturing site in Randolph County, the company announced Tuesday.
This brings Toyota’s total investment to $13.9 billion and more than 5,000 jobs.
“This investment reflects our commitment to electrification and carbon reduction, and it enables jobs and future economic growth for the region,” says Sean Suggs, president of Toyota North Carolina, in a statement. “We are excited to see the continued energy and support of this innovative manufacturing facility.”
This investment expansion adds capacity to support battery electric vehicles (BEVs) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs). An additional eight BEV/PHEV battery production lines will be added to the two previously announced, for a total of 10 BEV/PHEV battery lines, according to the company.
In addition, as originally announced, the plant will also have four battery lines for hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs). Production will be increased in a phased approach, with line launches planned through 2030 to reach a total production of more than 30GWh annually.
Toyota initially announced the Liberty project in 2021 with plans at the time calling for $1.29 billion for electric vehicle battery production and 1,750 new jobs. As the market shift to electric vehicles industry wide has accelerated, Toyota has increased its investment in North Carolina.
Toyota’s announcement comes on the heels of Gov. Roy Cooper’s meeting with Toyota President Koji Sato during the Southeast U.S./Japan Conference in Tokyo earlier this month.
“Through the last few years of building relationships, including my most recent trip to Tokyo and meeting with President Sato, our partnership with Toyota has become stronger than ever, culminating in this historic announcement,” Cooper said in a statement. “North Carolina’s transition to a clean energy economy is bringing better paying jobs that will support our families and communities for decades to come.”
Nearly 30,000 North Carolinians currently work at Japanese-owned companies, with several thousand more scheduled to start in the next five years. In recent years, companies including Toyota, HondaJet and Fujifilm have announced significant investments in North Carolina communities.
Toyota has put more than 24.6 million hybrid, plug-in hybrid, fuel cell and battery electric vehicles on the road globally. By 2025, the company plans to have an electrified option available for every Toyota and Lexus model globally.