Kentucky’s Auto Industry Output Best Since 2007

Reported by: Ellen Bryan
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Updated: 1/23/2013 11:17 pm

Kentucky's industry is bouncing back big, as the auto manufacturers produce more than one million vehicles in 2012.

The Cabinet of Economic Development said this is the best output since 2007.

Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky President Wil James said they were hoping for a good year because of the Toyota Camry’s popularity. However, they didn’t expect the market to recover so quickly.

“We were all hoping for the for the economic recovery to keep on recovering,” James said. “And actually last year in terms of our sales it came back a little faster than we all planned for. That's good news.”

Cabinet of Economic Development Executive Staff Advisor Ray Griffith said most people don’t realize Kentucky ranks 4th in the nation for light vehicle production.

Griffith said of all the light vehicles produced in the United States last year, one in every 10 is made in Kentucky.

“Auto industry is sort of an industry that helps to sort of float the boat,” James said. “Because as we go up a lot of other industry around us goes up.”

Which could mean good news for businesses, since James predicts this will be one of their strongest years out of the past 25 years.

State officials say 75,000 people are employed by the automotive industry in Kentucky.

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