Alabama's already strong automotive industry may grow even further, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal that identifies the Yellowhammer State as one of 11 states in the running to become the future home of a joint Toyota-Mazda production facility.
The report says Alabama and Florida, Kentucky, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Texas are all candidates trying to bring the auto manufacturers inside their borders.
The $1.6 billion plant is expected to create as many as 4,000 jobs and should be operational by 2021, the two companies announced last week. Toyota will build Corollas there and Mazda said it will focus on their line of crossovers.
The Alabama Department of Commerce told The Tuscaloosa News that they do not comment on potential projects.
Alabama's already-established automotive industry could help land the new plant. Around 57,000 workers are employed in the industry in the state, with more than 160 companies located here, which includes plants and supplier chains.
The foundation of the state's automotive industry consists of three auto assembly plants operated by Mercedes-Benz U.S. International in Tuscaloosa County, Honda in Talladega County and Hyundai in Montgomery, as well as a major engine plant for Toyota near Huntsville.
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