During the past quarter of a century, Toyota Manufacturing UK (TMUK) has seen well in excess of four million vehicles come off its production line. Since establishing its first major European manufacturing centre here, Toyota’s investment in its UK manufacturing operations has reached more than £2.5 billion, funding the introduction of advanced production methods and automotive technologies that have made the car-making processes and the products themselves more efficient and kinder to the environment.
TMUK Burnaston also has the distinction of having been selected as Toyota’s first European production site for petrol-electric hybrid vehicles, as Auris Hybrid models have been built at the plant since 2010. Today Auris Hybrid uses 1.8-litre engines that are also built in Britain, at TMUK’s Deeside engine factory. Other models built at the plant include Carina E, Avensis and Corolla.
Toyota announced that it would build its first major European manufacturing operations in the UK in 1989, outlining its plans for both engine and vehicle production centres. Building work began at Burnaston in 1990 and just two years later the first vehicle, a Carina E, came off the production line.
Since then, the plant has successfully organised 13 major new and revised model introductions. Most recently, £240 million investment was secured to equip the factory for future vehicle production using the Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA).
Today the TMUK Burnaston workforce numbers around 2,500 members, including some who have been part of the team since the start of production.