Study looks at Toyota’s contribution to West Virginia

By Dr. Jay S. Baron - Special to OVP

As the world’s second largest automaker, Toyota maintains operations around the globe and employs nearly 350,000 people. Over a third (135,900) of Toyota’s global employment is in its U.S. facilities.

The Center for Automotive Research (CAR) recently completed an analysis of Toyota’s economic contribution to the U.S. economy, as well as the economies of 19 individual states—including West Virginia. The study demonstrates a decades-long commitment from Toyota to produce vehicles, employ workers, and contribute to the tax base of both the country as a whole and the many states where the automaker has a presence.

Toyota’s presence and history in West Virginia is an excellent illustration of how the company’s U.S. activities benefit individual states and communities.

Toyota directly employs 1,900 workers in its West Virginia facilities, which include an assembly plant (1,300), as well as 13 Toyota dealerships that directly employ 600 people. Overall investment by Toyota throughout its West Virginia facilities totals $1.2 billion.

The centerpiece of Toyota’s presence in West Virginia is Toyota Motor Manufacturing West Virginia, Inc. (TMMWV) in Buffalo. The facility produced over 697,000 engines and 537,000 transmissions.

Toyota’s presence in West Virginia also supports numerous additional jobs throughout the state. In addition to its 1,900 direct employees in West Virginia, Toyota supports 900 jobs at automotive suppliers. Combined with supported spinoff jobs in other industries, Toyota is estimated to support 5,000 jobs in West Virginia. This economic activity results in an annual financial contribution of over $200 million to the state’s economy via disposable personal income.

Toyota’s positive impact on West Virginia is not limited to its employment and financial contributions. The company has long since been a leader in environmental sustainability as applied to both its products and the manufacturing facilities that produce them. In West Virginia, Toyota has worked to support the area’s biodiversity by planting native plants that offer a pit stop for monarch butterflies during their annual migration, as well as building bat boxes that provide shelter to the mammals that help control the insect population.

On an international level, Toyota-produced vehicles — such as the Mirai — use advanced technologies to reduce the environmental impact of driving. The Mirai was named 2016 World Green Car at the New York International Auto Show.

In addition, Toyota’s execution as a leader in manufacturing efficiency raises the bar for suppliers. Its supplier development efforts teach companies to perform at world-class levels; benefiting organizations within and outside of the Toyota supply chain.

To date, Toyota has donated over $700 million to nonprofit organizations in the United States—including $69 million in 2015. That same year, Toyota reported over $900,000 in philanthropic activity in West Virginia.

The positive impact Toyota’s operations have had on the people and the economy of the state of West Virginia serves as a perfect illustration of the company’s commitment to supporting American jobs and the US economy.

CAR’s full study, Contribution of Toyota Motor North America to the Economies of Nineteen States and the United States in 2015, may be found on the CAR website at

The Center for Automotive Research, a nonprofit automotive research center, has performed detailed studies of the contribution of the automotive industry and its value chain in the U.S. economy for more than 35 years.

CAR’s mission is to conduct independent research and analysis to educate, inform and advise stakeholders, policy makers, and the general public on critical issues facing the automotive industry, and the industry’s impact on the U.S. economy and society.

(Editor’s note: Submitted by Guthrie/Mayes Public Relations, the public relations agency-of-record for Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing North America, Inc.)

By Dr. Jay S. Baron

Special to OVP

Dr. Jay S. Baron is president and CEO of the Center for Automotive Research.

Dr. Jay S. Baron is president and CEO of the Center for Automotive Research.