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Toyota picks San Antonio for next U.S. plant

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TOKYO (AP) _ Toyota Motor Corp. has picked San Antonio as the site for its next U.S. plant, investing $800 million for a truck assembly plant expected to employ about 2,000 people, Japan's largest automaker said Wednesday.

The plant will be Toyota's sixth vehicle production plant in North America.

The company said in September that it hoped to add a production plant in North America near Mexico, where it is already building another plant set to begin production in about 2005.

The 2,000-acre San Antonio plant will help Toyota keep pace with demand for light trucks in North America, Toyota said. It will build about 150,000 Tundra pickup trucks a year from 2006.

Toyota has been considering another plant in North America to expand its highly profitable business in the region. Toyota has car assembly plants in Kentucky, Indiana, California and Canada.

The automaker had said it will build another auto plant after annual North American sales hit 2 million cars. The car maker sold 1.9 million new cars in North America last year.

Toyota has been reporting booming profits, largely on growing sales in North America that have eroded domestic rivals' market share.
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