The world’s largest carmaker by volume, Toyota, says it plans to invest $1.4 billion to build two new factories in Mexico and China.
The announcement marks an end to a three-year, self-imposed expansion freeze. The new plant in Guanajuato, Mexico, will turn out 200,000 compact Corollas per year by 2019. The plant in Guangzhou, China plans to start production in 2017 with a capacity to make around 100,000 cars a year.
The free-trade agreements between Mexico, the U.S., and Europe, coupled with Toyota’s new super-efficient global architecture has the potential to set a new competitive threshold for the car industry.