Toyota Material Handling U.S.A. Inc.'s lift truck plant in Columbus, Ind., is undergoing a 20,000-square-foot expansion to accommodate the addition of diesel tow tractor operations. When production begins in May, the facility will be the first in the United States to build Toyota tow tractors.
The company expects to gain some strategic advantages by building the product in the United States, says Shankar Basu, president and CEO of Toyota Material Handling.
"Demand for Toytoa's tow tractors has grown steadily in the North American market in recent years," said Basu in a March 25 statement. "Manufacturing these products in the U.S.A. allows Toyota to better meet our customers' needs. By manufacturing domestically, we are improving our speed of deliver for our customers, and helping them keep their operating efficiency as high as possible."
Locating within the Columbus plant also provides the company with welding experience from lift truck operations that are consistent with its tow truck assembly process, says Basu.
The 870,000-square-foot Columbus plant currently employs about 900 and produces more than 100 lift trucks daily