Toyota Tacoma to Hitch a Ride From the Lone Star State

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
toyota tacoma to hitch a ride from the lone star state

The perennially popular Toyota Tacoma will move all of its assembly south of the Rio Grande under a recently announced production switch-up.

When the ancient Sequoia full-size SUV enters a new generation, and along with it the Tundra pickup, it won’t stay at its present Princeton, Indiana home. Toyota plans to move Sequoia production southward to Texas, punting Tacoma output to a country that’s no stranger to the midsize pickup.

News of the production switcheroo came as Toyota announced the completion of the Indiana plant’s $1.3 billion modernization effort. There, production has already begun on the redesigned 2020 Highlander and Highlander Hybrid; the plant also handles the Sienna minivan and, until 2022, the body-on-frame Sequoia. Retooling for the next-gen Highlander carried a $700 million price tag.

Apparently, Toyota thought it best to boost efficiency by sending to next Sequoia to live with its platform mate, the Tundra, Automotive News reports. The inclusion of the Tacoma at the San Antonio plant came in 2010, as the automaker scrambled to eliminate excess capacity at its U.S. assembly plants. The economy’s in far better shape these days, and Toyota, while flush with cash, isn’t immune to cost-saving suggestions.

Once San Antonio gears up for the revamped Tundra and Sequoia, Tacoma production will move fully to Mexico. Two plants in that country — Guanajuato and Tijuana — already handle the bulk of the automaker’s Tacoma production.

While the Sequoia is an ancient thing, like the Tundra, it manages to sell in steady numbers to U.S. consumers, making its revamp a bottom-of-the-list concern for its parent company. Current-gen Sequoia production kicked off in late 2007, a year after the present Tundra. As for the Tacoma, the addition of the Ford Ranger to the midsize pickup scene in 2019 didn’t take much wind from its sales. Volume rose 1.3 percent for the year.

[Images: Toyota]

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  • CKNSLS Sierra SLT CKNSLS Sierra SLT on Jan 21, 2020

    Toyota continues it's success with selling mediocre designed-ultra reliable vehicles. And no.....their market share for the Tundra will always be a dribble compared to the domestics. RAM taking over the number two spot from Chevy-yea Chevy deserved it-based on the awful design of the 2019 Silverado. With that being said Tundra will never break the hold on the top three makers/sellers of pickup trucks. Every review I have read for the Tacoma isn't flattering-at all. But (as stated in another post) the thing continues to sell.

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    • CKNSLS Sierra SLT CKNSLS Sierra SLT on Jan 21, 2020

      JON- I assume you mean "GOOD INFLUENCE" with all the perks. I disagree-I have read many negative reviews about different vehicles over the years. But yes-I guess the perks could influence some to be more favorable.

  • Dal20402 Dal20402 on Jan 21, 2020

    People complain endlessly about the 3.5 as though it's a sin to rev an engine in a truck. Evidently none of them ever drove anything powered by a two-stroke Detroit Diesel; those were every bit as peaky. The wags always said: "Slam your hand in the window before you drive it so you'll be pissed off."

  • Inside Looking Out In June 1973, Leonid Brezhnev arrived in Washington for his second summit meeting with President Richard Nixon. Knowing of the Soviet leader’s fondness for luxury automobiles, Nixon gave him a shiny Lincoln Continental. Brezhnev was delighted with the present and insisted on taking a spin around Camp David, speeding through turns while the president nervously asked him to slow down.
  • Bobby D'Oppo Great sound and smooth power delivery in a heavier RWD or AWD vehicle is a nice blend, but current V8 pickup trucks deliver an unsophisticated driving experience. I think a modern full-size pickup could be very well suited to a manual transmission.In reality, old school, revvy atmo engines pair best with manual transmissions because it's so rewarding to keep them in the power band on a winding road. Modern turbo engines have flattened the torque curve and often make changing gears feel more like a chore.
  • Chuck Norton For those worried about a complex power train-What vehicle doesn't have one? I drive a twin turbo F-150 (3.5) Talk about complexity.. It seems reliability based on the number of F-150s sold is a non-issue. As with many other makes/models. I mean how many operations are handle by micro today's vehicles?
  • Ravenuer The Long Island Expressway.
  • Kwik_Shift A nice stretch of fairly remote road that would be great for test driving a car's potential, rally style, is Flinton Road off of Highway 41 in Ontario. Twists/turns/dips/rises. Just hope a deer doesn't jump out at you. Also Highway 60 through Algonquin Provincial Park in Ontario. Great scenery with lots of hills.