Toyota Plant in Georgetown is Making History
It takes a team of nearly 9,000 people and a mix of human and machine.
"A huge majority of our team members physically touch each car that goes down the line," the plant’s president Wil James said.
The plant has been producing cars since 1988 when the first Toyota Camry rolled off the line.
Now, 26 years later and a few upgrades, that same Camry is the best selling car in America.
"You know when you talk about sports, about repeat and three-peat and how about 13-peat. We’re working on 14," James said.
James has been in Georgetown since the very beginning. When he started at Toyota in 1987, he was managing a team of about 20 people.
"When we started, the original expectation was we would be talking maybe 2,500 maybe 3,000," James said. "Before we even got to that there was an announcement about an expansion and then another expansion, then another expansion."
This year, the team is ready for yet another expansion, one that changes history.
"You just don’t any stronger than the Lexus brand and to be able to be the site that is going to be building the first Lexus on U.S. soil," James said. "I wouldn’t [it’s] say overwhelming, I would say heartwarming."
This fall, the plant will begin production on the Lexus ES sedan, making the site the largest Toyota plant in the world.
Toyota said the addition will bring about 750 to 800 new jobs to Georgetown.
"You know, you can’t get this many people together in one place and have that those smiles and that warm family feeling if you didn’t have caring people that were coming into the gate in the first place," James said.
"I think just the DNA of the local people here in Kentucky is phenomenal," James said. "I love it here."