(Source: Centerpoint Energy)

  (Source: The Article Writer)
Company will expand a factory in Houston for production

Toshiba recently announced that it will begin producing electric traction motors for hybrid and plug-in vehicles in a factory in Houston, Texas, and automaker Ford will be first in line to purchase them.

Ford's next-generation hybrid system is expected to be released in 2012. Since the release of the Escape hybrid in 2005, Ford has worked with Aisin Seiki, a Japanese supplier, for production of its hybrid transaxles. Now, Ford has decided to "bring production of its hybrid transaxles in-house for the new system."

"We welcome Toshiba's decision to locate this new production in the United States," said Sherif Marakby, Director of Electrification Programs and Engineering at Ford Motor Company. "This key technology will help build U.S. capacity and supply of components to further enable vehicle electrification in the North American market."

Toshiba will be "supplying the motors for integration into the transmissions" that will be built at aFord factory in Wayne, Michigan. These motors will be used for plug-in vehicles and will represent a new hybrid generation. 

At Toshiba's plant in Houston, the company is expanding the production line for "high performance drive motors" such as electric vehicles (EV), hybrid electric vehicles (HEV) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEV). They will begin construction for this factory in January 2011, and begin production of the motors in 2012. According to the press release, "Toshiba estimates that the global market for motors for such vehicles, including hybrids, plug-in hybrids and battery electric vehicles, will grow from 50 billion yen in fiscal year 2009 to 1 trillion yen in fiscal year 2020." In addition, the company is happy to contribute to the United States' by building in Texas.

"Toshiba recognizes the importance of localizing production within North America to ensure long term growth and make a commitment to the North American market," said Shinichiro Akiba, President of the Toshiba International Corporation, which is a Houston-based Toshiba Group company that manufacture and markets motors and industrial equipment, and the base for this expansion program. 

This expansion in Texas will be Toshiba's first "overseas manufacturing base for automotive propulsion motors which are currently produced in Mie Prefecture, Japan" and the decision to move has led them to a major contract with Ford Motor Company.

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