evok

Toyota City, Flint, MI Plant

26 posts in this topic

evok    0

For the past six months I have been hearing rumors of a Toyota plant being discussed in the Flint, MI area. First I have heard that the GM Buick City site might be the location for either a Toyota General Assembly plant and more recently and probably more likely an Engine Plant.

I write this, with the understanding that there has been lobbying by the UAW for Toyota to put something in Wixom. The rumors I first heard were prior to the Wixom efforts. Recently I have been hearing more and more chatter for a Flint site.

I write this with the understanding that some will comment that Toyota will not sleep with the UAW, particularly the Flint UAW. I say it is a mute point and Toyota is savy enough to work around that. Toyota already deals with the UAW at NUMMI. Toyota as we have seen with the new Texas truck plant is going to put the work where they want the customers. Toyota wants the midwest.

Also, Flint and Michigan needs work and Flint may be an ideal location. And the state and local government know it and I am sure if the rumors are in fact real, will do everything in their power to attract Toyota.

What better way for Toyota to creat good will for their product than to employ, especially in an economically depressed area.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
91z4me    0

The already own the west coast. A plant in KY, TX, partial ownership and production should start at West Lafayette, IN soon, add in MI and Toyota will have quite a few plants in the US. That will be key to them overtaking the GM and Ford faithful. If Toyota can get the Big 3 die hards to switch in MI then I don't see to much stopping them from becoming number one. Also with all the lost work in Flint and other MI cities due to closures of Big 3 plants I can very well see the residents being perfectly willing to switch their allegiance to Toyota, and who can blame them?

Edit: I forgot their truck plant in southern IN.

Edited by 91z4me

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
evok    0

I am not seeking comments on, if the Toyota plant is a good idea, or if Toyota will sleep with the UAW in MI. I opened this thread for verification.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hudson    16

For the past six months I have been hearing rumors of a Toyota plant being discussed in the Flint, MI area.  First I have heard that the GM Buick City site might be the location for either a Toyota General Assembly plant and more recently and probably more likely an Engine Plant.

I write this, with the understanding that there has been lobbying by the UAW for Toyota to put something in Wixom.  The rumors I first heard were prior to the Wixom efforts.  Recently I have been hearing more and more chatter for a Flint site.

I write this with the understanding that some will comment that Toyota will not sleep with the UAW, particularly the Flint UAW.  I say it is a mute point and Toyota is savy enough to work around that.  Toyota already deals with the UAW at NUMMI.  Toyota as we have seen with the new Texas truck plant is going to put the work where they want the customers.  Toyota wants the midwest.

The point is not moot. Toyota will avoid the UAW at all costs. They're most likely going to open a plant in Michigan (or the mid-west), but it won't be a UAW plant. Once the UAW gets a foothold of Toyota, it will attempt to spread across all Toyota plants. I've got to hope that Toyota's too smart to let that happen.

The NUMMI plant is NOT a Toyota plant. It is a joint-venture plant with GM, which is how the UAW got in there. All of the joint-venture plants (and former joint-venture plants) are UAW controlled....Mitsubishi, AutoAlliance, NUMMI, and CAMI. But all of the strictly transplanted faciliities are non-union in the US.

Flint is a possibility for Toyota. The UAW is not.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
evok    0

The point is not moot. Toyota will avoid the UAW at all costs. They're most likely going to open a plant in Michigan (or the mid-west), but it won't be a UAW plant. Once the UAW gets a foothold of Toyota, it will attempt to spread across all Toyota plants. I've got to hope that Toyota's too smart to let that happen.

The NUMMI plant is NOT a Toyota plant. It is a joint-venture plant with GM, which is how the UAW got in there. All of the joint-venture plants (and former joint-venture plants) are UAW controlled....Mitsubishi, AutoAlliance, NUMMI, and CAMI. But all of the strictly transplanted faciliities are non-union in the US.

Flint is a possibility for Toyota. The UAW is not.

"I say it is a mute point and Toyota is savy enough to work around that (UAW)."

Isn't that what I wrote. I actually put that statement in their just for YOU so we would not get on some UAW/Toyota tangent.

Getting back to the point of the thread, if rumours are true, it may appear that Toyota is seriously thinking about putting a plant in the UAW stronghold. That does not mean the plant will be UAW. From their 20+ year NUMMI experience, Toyota is aware of what the UAW has to offer.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hudson    16

"I say it is a mute point and Toyota is savy enough to work around that (UAW)."

Isn't that what I wrote.  I actually put that statement in their just for YOU so we would not get on some UAW/Toyota tangent. 

Getting back to the point of the thread, if rumours are true, it may appear that Toyota is seriously thinking about putting a plant in the UAW stronghold.  That does not mean the plant will be UAW.  From their 20+ year NUMMI experience, Toyota is aware of what the UAW has to offer.

If they were to buy an existing plant, I'm sure the UAW would come along with it as part of the sale. THAT is why they won't buy a Big3 factory. Not why they won't potentially move to Michigan. But getting into Michigan without disturbing the bees nest that is the UAW would be difficult, even for Toyota.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
evok    0

If they were to buy an existing plant, I'm sure the UAW would come along with it as part of the sale. THAT is why they won't buy a Big3 factory. Not why they won't potentially move to Michigan. But getting into Michigan without disturbing the bees nest that is the UAW would be difficult, even for Toyota.

I do not know if you have seen what Buick City looks like these days, there is not much to purchase beside rubble. And no where did I say purchase an existing Big 3 facility. Greenfield would be the way to go from a cost perspective anyway.

Yes a place like Flint has a long history with the UAW, but do you honestly think Toyota would hire many ex-GM/Dephi workers. With Flint running at an app 14% unemployment rate, there is a large population to draw upon.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hudson    16

Yes a place like Flint has a long history with the UAW, but do you honestly think Toyota would hire many ex-GM/Dephi workers.  With Flint running at an app 14% unemployment rate, there is a large population to draw upon.

But what percentage of that "14%" do you think are ex-auto workers?

Since I can't speak for the quality of the workers in Flint, I'll let others do that. With unemployment that high, I've got to assume that many of these people can't find work anywhere, let alone a relatively high-pressure job as an assembler for Toyota. Why would Toyota want to draw from this pool as opposed to many of the other areas of the country that have high unemployment and do not carry the baggage of having been let go by GM and its suppliers?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
evok    0

But what percentage of that "14%" do you think are ex-auto workers?

Very few since most ex-auto workers are most likely retired and those on the cusp will soon be retired.

Since I can't speak for the quality of the workers in Flint, I'll let others do that.

I can speak to that. I would have to say no different than where Toyota or other transplants have put new plants.

With unemployment that high, I've got to assume that many of these people can't find work anywhere, let alone a relatively high-pressure job as an assembler for Toyota.

High pressure job?

Why would Toyota want to draw from this pool as opposed to many of the other areas of the country that have high unemployment and do not carry the baggage of having been let go by GM and its suppliers?

For the same reason Toyota built a truck plant in Texas. Any ex-GM/Delphi workers in Flint are retired. Those are the only type of ex-GM/Dephi workers there are. Toyota would start with a fresh pool of YOUNG potential talent. A pool that they could train and mold to their system. They have done it elsewhere.

Edited by evok

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
nyscene911    0

But what percentage of that "14%" do you think are ex-auto workers?

Since I can't speak for the quality of the workers in Flint, I'll let others do that. With unemployment that high, I've got to assume that many of these people can't find work anywhere, let alone a relatively high-pressure job as an assembler for Toyota. Why would Toyota want to draw from this pool as opposed to many of the other areas of the country that have high unemployment and do not carry the baggage of having been let go by GM and its suppliers?

The huge positive publicity that would come from their moving into flint. I could see the headlines praising the humanist toyota for saving the people that gm abandoned. Its a HUGE PR opportunity for them.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Stiltz    0

I can speak to that.  I would have to say no different than where Toyota or other transplants have put new plants. 

High pressure job? 

I've worked at Buick City (Flint North). I would say a large percentage of workers there would be shocked to enter a production environment that Toyota has become famous for. I'll spare the details, but Flint North operates in a manner nowhere near the Toyota Production System.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hudson    16

I've worked at Buick City (Flint North).  I would say a large percentage of workers there would be shocked to enter a production environment that Toyota has become famous for.  I'll spare the details, but Flint North operates in a manner nowhere near the Toyota Production System.

Thank you.

I can't imagine the typical unemployed worker in Flint being of the same mindset as an unemployed worker in Georgetown, Kentucky twenty years ago or one in Buffalo, West Virginia ten years ago or one in San Antonio today.

While the positive PR of Toyota moving into Flint would be good, wouldn't the negative PR of "Toyota making GM look bad" be bad for Toyota?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest Josh   
Guest Josh

Thank you.

I can't imagine the typical unemployed worker in Flint being of the same mindset as an unemployed worker in Georgetown, Kentucky twenty years ago or one in Buffalo, West Virginia ten years ago or one in San Antonio today.

While the positive PR of Toyota moving into Flint would be good, wouldn't the negative PR of "Toyota making GM look bad" be bad for Toyota?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

No, because the local media would not cover that aspect and you know it Hudson.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hudson    16

No, because the local media would not cover that aspect and you know it Hudson.

SOMEBODY would cover it. And it would be fodder for the UAW to turn the country against Toyota. Even if Toyota is actually providing jobs to people who need them, they wouldn't be union jobs and the UAW would see this as a problem to their own selfish ends.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Clownzilla    0

If they were to buy an existing plant, I'm sure the UAW would come along with it as part of the sale. THAT is why they won't buy a Big3 factory. Not why they won't potentially move to Michigan. But getting into Michigan without disturbing the bees nest that is the UAW would be difficult, even for Toyota.

Yeah, the UAW would be all over ANYONE that builds a factory in Michigan. Even though the UAW's existence is aiding the demise of northern industry.......they will still try to unionize Toyota in the north. After that, they will start to go after all the other Toyota factories in the USA.............like a virus. Anyway, Toyota could be looking at building a factory in the north, but that would be one of the biggest mistakes they they have made in the history of their company.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
evok    0

Thank you.

I can't imagine the typical unemployed worker in Flint being of the same mindset as an unemployed worker in Georgetown, Kentucky twenty years ago or one in Buffalo, West Virginia ten years ago or one in San Antonio today.

While the positive PR of Toyota moving into Flint would be good, wouldn't the negative PR of "Toyota making GM look bad" be bad for Toyota?

Granted this whole thread is speculation, but Toyota would not be hiring older GM workers. They would interview 20/30 somethings as is their past practice.

The unemployed in Flint are not unemployed autoworker.

Edited by evok

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
motownr    0

Great thread, Evok.

You were asking for verification, not opinions.

I haven't been told anything, but I do know that Toyota is pumping money into the supplier complex they have in Fowlerville (20 miles due east of Lansing, maybe 45 miles west of Detroit.

IF Toyota has the brass balls to build in Michigan (a huge IF), they might build off/around their existing supplier network, which just happens to be proximate to their forthcoming technical center south of Ann Arbor.

What would you say if you learned that a Toyota insider just bought a large parcel of land in Fowlerville? :AH-HA_wink:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Polish_Kris    0

SOMEBODY would cover it. And it would be fodder for the UAW to turn the country against Toyota. Even if Toyota is actually providing jobs to people who need them, they wouldn't be union jobs and the UAW would see this as a problem to their own selfish ends.

Of course it would be the UAW, and it will be, watch...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hudson    16

Granted this whole thread is speculation, but Toyota would not be hiring older GM workers.  They would interview 20/30 somethings as is their past practice.

The unemployed in Flint are not unemployed autoworker.

As has been Toyota's (and Nissan's and Hyundais...) past practice, they will interview 5-10 times the number of potential employees for the open positions. Which, it would seem, would include people older than 30-somethings. Potentially opening the door for former GM (or supplier) employees.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
evok    0

Potentially opening the door for former GM (or supplier) employees.

Potential. There is a potential for any thing. That is where your logic is flawed. Let's be realistic. The average age of a GM UAW worker is about 50 years old.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hudson    16

Potential.  There is a potential for any thing.  That is where your logic is flawed.  Let's be realistic.  The average age of a GM UAW worker is about 50 years old.

I'm sure that if ANY UAW members are still in Flint and Toyota were to open a plant there, those people would be among the first to file an application.

But the point seems to be moot at this time:

Consultant: Toyota will spurn Michigan

UAW dissidents' Delphi protest killed chances for a plant, Cole says

Lindsay Chappell

Automotive News / February 6, 2006 - 6:00 am

Toyota Motor Corp. says it still is considering locations in union-heavy Michigan to build a transmission and engine plant.

But one of Michigan's biggest boosters, industry consultant David Cole, says he believes Toyota no longer is serious about the state. Cole says he thinks recent activism by dissident UAW members has effectively killed the deal for Michigan.

"I believe we had a great shot at bringing a Toyota plant here," Cole said from his office at the Center for Automotive Research in Ann Arbor, Mich. "It's now off the track. Indiana looks like the front-runner for it now."

http://www.autonews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/arti...20of%20Contents

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
evok    0

Doesn't mean they would get hired. Toyota is too savy for that.

As for the AN article.

Lets call a spade a spade. The article is based upon Cole's opinion.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
RJB    0

I don't know that would be interesting if they could do something in Flint. I have not heard anything about that other than them possibly putting up a plant in around Ann Arbor, but that been in the news for awhile. Flint is way too hardcore UAW for Toyota to go in there though, Flint does need some dire work though!! I worked across the street from the Buick city plant when they were leveling that place, it only added to the depressing situation that Flint is in when that place came down.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Your content will need to be approved by a moderator

Guest
You are commenting as a guest. If you have an account, please sign in.
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoticons maximum are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.