Patrick Rall's picture

No imported 2012 Toyota Camry sedans for the US

Mr. Akio Toyoda loves bragging about how “American” the Camry is and when the 2012 Toyota Camry begins hitting the market later this month – all new Camrys sold in the US will be built in the Japanese automaker’s Georgetown, Kentucky production facility and going forward, none of the Camry sedans built in Japan will be shipped into the US market.

Toyota’s non-union Georgetown production facility has long produced the majority of the new Camry units sold in the United States, allowing company head Akio Toyoda to frequently proclaim that the 2012 Toyota Camry is the most American car on the US market. While some of these mid-sized sedans sold in the US are currently produced in Toyota’s Tsutsumi plant in Toyota City, Japan, those cars accounted for less than a half of 1% through the 2011 calendar year so shifting all US production of the 2012 Toyota Camry will not be that big of a change. However, it will serve as one more feather in the cap for those who base their new car purchases on things like how “American” a company claims that their vehicles may be. The strictly-American production of the 2012 Camry for the US market will also include the 2012 Camry Hybrid, with the hybrid drivetrain components being shipped from their assembly points in Japan. Toyota plans to sell around 360,000 versions of the 2012 Camry and Camry Hybrid next year, with any Subaru’s plant in Indiana handling any need for production and assembly assistance.

While Akio Toyoda surely plans for the 2012 Toyota Camry to be a big hit in the US market, the Camry has been a comparative flop in Japan. The company sold just 1,100 Camrys last year and the most that they have ever sold in a single year was in 1990 when roughly 82,000 units were sold. Based on those numbers and the expected sale of 360,000 Camry and Camry Hybrids in 2012, there are days in the US where consumers buy more examples of the Camry than the entire Japanese market does over the course of some years. Even with this shockingly low success rate in Japan, Toyota plans to continue production at the Tsusumi plant rather than importing Camrys from the US while using the majority of the Japanese plant’s Camry production being sent to other non-US markets around the world (like Russia).

The 2012 Toyota Camry officially hit the streets in Japan (if anyone bought one) on September 5th and American consumers can get their first chance to buy the redesigned Camry starting later this month.

Other 2012 Camry News:
The 2012 Toyota Camry for Russia introduced as a premium business sedan
The first 2012 Toyota Camry commercials hit the web
Toyota driver Kyle Busch loses his license for 128 in a 45
The 2012 Toyota Camry will feature HD Radio Technology
The 2012 Toyota Camry prices up close
The 2012 Toyota Camry will pace the Daytona 500

Source: Automotive News

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