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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Japan’s Toyota Motor Co. is expanding its presence in the heart of Big Three territory with the grand opening Friday of a new design center in southeast Michigan.

The Calty Design Research studio, built next to Toyota’s technical center in Ann Arbor, marks the latest in a wave of investments by Asian automakers.

The activities bolster the state’s efforts to offset job losses in the domestic auto industry by attracting high-tech business.

“About 85 percent of the world’s automotive research and development is in Michigan, and this is an acknowledgement of that,” said David Hollister, director of Michigan’s department of labor and economic growth.

Tapping the region’s rich automotive talent pool, Hyundai Motor Co. is building a new and larger technical center in Superior Township, near Ann Arbor.

Suzuki Motor Corp. opened the nearby Suzuki Tech Center last year and Nissan Motor Co. is expanding its technical center in Farmington Hills.

The new design, R&D and engineering facilities generate high-paying jobs, benefitting a regional economy losing part of its traditional manufacturing base.

The Toyota Technical Center, the company’s main North American research and engineering facility, employs 526 people.

But the proliferation of these activities also underscores the Asians’ continuing inroads into the U.S. market at the expense of Detroit’s automakers. Asian brands account for just over a third of U.S. sales, led by Toyota with 11.8 percent.

The Japanese giant, which earned a stunning $10.2 billion in the year to March 31, is aiming for an even bigger slice of the market. The company wants to boost sales in the Midwest, where its share is closer to 8 percent. In the Detroit area, Toyota has less than 3 percent of the market.

As the company expands into segments such as full-size pickup trucks, which are dominated by the domestic automakers, “there’s a lot of brainpower that Toyota feels they need to harness,” said Michael Robinet, vice president of global forecasting at consulting firm CSM Worldwide.

By erecting a design studio — its second U.S. design facility — next to the technical center in Ann Arbor, the automaker expects to speed up the development of models geared for the U.S. market, such as the next-generation Tundra truck.

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I guess they're trying to address their bland styling problems....hmm... ------- !?!....riiiiight....<speechless>

-Jason
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Originally posted by RCtennis3811@May 15 2004, 12:37 AM
I guess they're trying to address their bland styling problems....hmm... ------- !?!....riiiiight....<speechless>

-Jason
Probably going to spy on their neighbors ;)
 

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This is nice Toyota brings Jobs into America while GM sends them out...



Yea maybe we can give them the malibu and Monte designs, a sure way to help them lower profit.
 
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Kind of scary. They are right in our backyard, or maybe a better analogy may be they are in our "backfield" getting close to the quaterback.

Hopefully these kids in their 20's and 30's working for Toyota and Honda will go to GM or Ford when they mature (i.e. their 40's and 50's). You know, work for the competition, figure out what they do, then go to a domestic company.

I don't see Toyota's or Honda's numbers going down.

I would figure GM and Ford would be targeting these kids.

<_< :huh:
 
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