Toyota Texas has been in the news recently – and for good reason. Toyota has selected San Antonio over its nine other U.S. plants for a $391 million expansion that will bring advanced manufacturing capabilities to its South Side assembly plant and more supplier companies to the region over the next five years.

The Toyota plant opened here 16 years ago and now employs 3,200 people. On top of that, 23 Toyota suppliers are here, bringing the total to approximately 7,200 employees at the site, which builds Tundra and Tacoma trucks. Toyota estimates that, at some point, its total investment in the plant will exceed $3 billion.

I recently toured the plant, learning what goes into the manufacturing of the trucks as they roll off the line each day. The plant gives tours regularly of all 2.2 million square feet! We got to see the Body Weld Shop, where a team of computer-controlled robots use state-of-the-art technology to weld stamp steel pieces together. Then we went to the Plastics Shop where the bumpers and instrument panels are made. We also saw the overhead conveyors transporting the trucks from Paint to Assembly, where the trucks begin to take shape.

One of the highlights for me was learning about the Guiding Principles at Toyota:

  • Honor the language and spirit of the law of every nation and undertake open and fair business activities to be a good corporate citizen of the world.
  • Respect the culture and customs of every nation and contribute to economic and social development through corporate activities in their respective communities.
  • Dedicate our business to providing clean and safe products and to enhancing the quality of life everywhere through all of our activities.
  • Create and develop advanced technologies and provide outstanding products and services that fulfill the needs of customers worldwide.
  • Foster a corporate culture that enhances both individual creativity and the value of teamwork, while honoring mutual trust and respect between labor and management.
  • Pursue growth through harmony with the global community via innovative management.
  • Work with business partners in research and manufacture to achieve stable, long-term growth and mutual benefits, while keeping ourselves open to new partnerships.

    “This is exactly the kind of project San Antonio has been strategically preparing for, and it shows we are ready for big investment and that our workforce is dialed in for the future,” says San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg. “We’ve been working across sectors to establish one of the most significant international manufacturing clusters in the country and a supplier network that really is second to none in the automotive industry. The news (of the expansion) is proof-positive of that.”

    If you’d like to tour the plant, you can RSVP online or call 210-263-4002. It’s well worth the visit.

    In honor of San Antonio’s 300th anniversary, I’m ranking our Toyota Plant No. 46 in my 300 Reasons to Love San Antonio list. Another great reason to live, work, buy a home and drive a Toyota truck in San Antonio.