The plant's location was made official Wednesday afternoon. Toyota's existing engine plant in Huntsville employs 1,400 team members.
"We always like to have plans and options for the future", Carter said, when asked if the bigger parcel is meant to accommodate expansions.
"Alabama's automotive manufacturers continued to make impressive strides in 2017, while also laying the groundwork for growth in production and technology in 2018 and beyond", said Greg Canfield, secretary of the Alabama Department of Commerce.
The new plant will be located in Huntsville about 14 miles from Toyota's plant.
Production capacity at the new plant will be 300,000 units, and the U.S. $1.6 billion cost of the facility's construction will be shared evenly by the two companies.
The joint venture represents a US$1.6 billion investment that Mazda and Toyota plan to make with equal funding contributions.
The city of Huntsville will vote on additional incentives today, Underwood said. Exact details of the deal have yet to be announced, but sources indicate the automakers were seeking at least $1 billion in incentives.
Toyota, Mazda to build $1.6B joint plant in Alabama
Toyota and Mazda are participating in a joint venture to build the plant, which will produce the Toyota Corolla and a new Mazda crossover, with a capacity to build 300,000 vehicles annually. Overall it has 36,000 US employees, not including those at dealerships.
A workforce already well-versed in the automotive industry also helped contribute to the site selection.
"We applaud the people of the region and are pleased to see that so many other automakers recognize the same great qualities here that we did back in the mid-90s: a highly skilled and dedicated workforce, an amiable business climate, and great Southern hospitality".
The three states will be making their best efforts to market their plans to Toyota, Mazda and potential and current suppliers, as reported by the Daily Journal's Dennis Seid.
The decision to pick Alabama is another example of foreign-based automakers building USA factories in the South. The following year, it will edge out IN to become No. 2 IN the country, behind only Detroit's home state.
Alabama has won the multi-state bidding war. Alabama and its neighbors have also pioneered the development of state-run worker training programs, he said. Mazda does not now have any US factories.
Still, Toyota and Mazda have said their collaboration will respect mutual independence and equality.
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