CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Employees at Toyota Motor Manufacturing’s Buffalo plant celebrated Tuesday as the first six-speed high-torque automatic transmission came off the plant’s second automatic transmission line, capping a nearly $90 million investment in the facility.
Toyota announced in August 2013 that it would spend $90 million to add an additional transmission production line at the Buffalo plant — the eighth expansion since the Putnam County plant opened in 1996.
Prior to the expansion, the plant was capable of producing 500,000 transmissions a year. The new line increases annual production capacity by 240,000 units to 740,000.
“This capacity increase helps us meet growing North American demand,” Millie Marshall, president of Toyota West Virginia, said in a statement.
The transmissions rolling off the new line are designed for Toyota’s Highlander and four-wheel-drive Sienna models. They will be shipped to Toyota’s assembly plant in Princeton, Ind.
The Buffalo plant also produces six-speed automatic transmissions for the Toyota’s Avalon, Camry, Rav4 and Venza models and the Lexus RX350. The plant also produces about 639,000 engines each year…