Toyota is set to invest nearly an additional $8 billion to expand battery production at its North Carolina Battery Plant, solidifying the site’s position as the center of the company’s lithium-ion battery production in North America.
The Liberty, North Carolina, location was announced in 2021 through a partnership with Toyota Tsusho, with an initial investment of $1.29 billion towards battery production and job creation, and with the additional investment, the automaker is putting $13.9 billion toward the facility. The plant is expected to have a 7 million-square-foot campus, and the new investment is also expected to add over 5,000 jobs.
Funds will largely go towards creating eight electric and plug-in hybrid hybrid battery production lines, adding to the two previously announced battery lines. The plant will also have four battery lines for hybrid electric vehicles. Toyota expects to increase production with new line launches through 2030, reaching a total production capacity of more than 30 gigawatt hours.
“Through the last few years of building relationships, including my most recent trip to Tokyo and meeting with President Sato, our partnership with Toyota has become stronger than ever, culminating in this historic announcement,” said North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper. “North Carolina’s transition to a clean energy economy is bringing better paying jobs that will support our families and communities for decades to come.”
Toyota Commits to Clean Vehicles, Low-Emissions Operations
Expansion of Toyota’s North Carolina facility reflects its overall commitment to low-emissions transportation. The company plans to have an electrified option available for every Toyota and Lexus model worldwide by 2025.
Earlier this year, Toyota also unveiled plans to develop a new battery technology, capable of charging in less than 10 minutes and allowing for over 620 miles of range. The company aims to make EVs more cost-effective and overall more attractive to consumers with the innovation, and the new batteries and vehicles will be introduced in 2026.
Along with increasing its EV offerings, the company has made efforts to decarbonize operations in vehicle manufacturing. Its Alabama plant has supported a $49 million solar project that will power the facility, avoiding 22,000 metric tons of emissions each year. The company has also committed to transforming an old coal plant into a new solar project in Kentucky, which is expected to be operational by 2024.
Toyota has committed to carbon-neutral operations by 2035 and total carbon neutrality across the vehicle lifecycle by 2050.