It's the price of doing business.
Although the fifth generation Toyota RAV4 just had its official debut at the New York Auto Show, the automaker is already gearing up for it to be a massive sales success. Automotive News reports that Toyota is planning to spend $1.1 billion USD in order to upgrade two of its three Ontario, Canada production facilities where the RAV4 is built. Obviously thrilled to keep RAV4 production in Canada, the Canadian and Ontario governments are each chipping in $85.6 million to help with those upgrades.
The facilities require updates specifically for the new RAV4 hybrid as well as additional research and development in Ontario. According to the report, these upgrades will include new automation technology in the paint and plastics departments. Adding a cherry on top of the ice cream sundae is that this investment will preserve some 8,000 jobs while creating another 450 along with 1,000 co-op placements. Furthermore, Toyota’s investment will keep business going strong at the 60-plus Canadian-based suppliers. Canadian Toyota RAV4 production isn’t anything, having taken place in the Great White North since 2008.
Toyota also has plans to build RAV4s at a second Ontario plant that currently handles Corolla production, but that will soon be transferred to the recently announced Toyota-Mazda joint venture production facility being built in Alabama. Not only is the RAV4 a strong-seller in the US, but in Canada as well where it’s Toyota’s best-selling vehicle. More than 50,000 units were sold last year in Canada, and that figure is expected to increase with the redesigned 2019 RAV4.