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New United Motor Manufacturing, Inc. is an automobile manufacturing plant in Fremont, California. The factory was originally a General Motors plant opened in 1962 and shut down in 1982.[1] GM and Toyota reopened the factory as a joint venture in 1984 to manufacture vehicles to be sold under both brands.[1] GM pulled out of the venture in June 2009. Toyota indicated it plans to pull out by March 2010.[2][3]

When it reopened for production in 1984, it was the first automotive joint venture plant in the United States. GM saw this joint venture as an opportunity to learn about the ideas of lean manufacturing from the Japanese company, while Toyota gained its first manufacturing base in North America and a chance to implement its production system in an American labor environment. Many business textbooks mention NUMMI when they discuss joint ventures.

GM had placed around 12 managers each year at the plant to learn lean techniques and has improved quality enough across the rest of its operations for it to show through on J.D. Power quality rankings. While the plant has been successful in adopting Lean, other GM plants have seen benefits. GM's Oshawa, Ontario plant received the 2006 JD Power Gold Plant Quality Award, the third time in five years.

As of September 2009, the NUMMI plant produces the Toyota Corolla compact car and Toyota Tacoma pickup truck. Production of the Pontiac Vibe hatchback was discontinued in August 2009 as GM phased out the Pontiac brand.[4] In the past, it produced the Chevrolet Nova (1984–1988); the Geo Prizm (1989–1997), the Chevrolet Prizm (1998–2002) and the Hilux (1991–1995, predecessor of the Tacoma), as well as the Toyota Voltz, the Japanese right-hand drive version of the Pontiac Vibe. Both are based on the Toyota Matrix, which is manufactured in Cambridge, Ontario, Canada along with the Toyota Corolla. Employment is nearly 5,500 workers. NUMMI employees are represented by The International, United Automobile, Aerospace and Agricultural Implement Workers of America (UAW) Local 2244. NUMMI sells 60% of its parts to Toyota and 40% to General Motors.


Future of NUMMI

On June 29, 2009, General Motors announced that they would discontinue the joint venture with Toyota.[5] The announcement was made following GM CEO Fritz Henderson announcing in April that General Motors would discontinue the Pontiac Vibe production at NUMMI. The two automakers were in discussions but could not find a suitable product to be produced at the factory. “After extensive analysis, GM and Toyota could not reach an agreement on a future product plan that made sense for all parties,” GM North America President Troy Clarke said in a statement. "Toyota’s hope was to continue the venture and we haven’t yet decided any plans at the factory,” said Hideaki Homma, Toyota’s Tokyo-based spokesman. “While we respect this decision by GM, the economic and business environment surrounding Toyota is also extremely severe, and so this decision by GM makes the situation even more difficult for Toyota.” Before GM decided to sever its stake in the NUMMI joint venture, Toyota was considering offering a version of its Prius hybrid to GM that would be built at the factory and sold as a GM model but Toyota has indicated that it was seriously considering exiting the venture also.[6][7]

On August 27, 2009, Toyota announced that it will discontinue its production contract with NUMMI, shifting Tacoma production to its San Antonio, Texas pickup plant and Corolla assembly to Cambridge, Ontario. A total of 5,400 employees will be affected, including 4,550 UAW hourly workers.[8]

In November 2009, Toyota's head of U.S. sales took calls from autoworkers, saying that though it has been a difficult decision to shut down the plant, "the economics of having a plant in California so far away from the supplier lines" in the Midwest "just doesn't make business sense" for Toyota to continue running the NUMMI plant.[9] Meanwhile, autoworkers are preparing for the shut down by refreshing skills and planning for career transitions.[10] Federal, state, and local officials are also participating in the transition discussions.[11]

In January 2010, a possible use of the land was proposed: a new stadium for home games of the Oakland Athletics of Major League Baseball. It is close to the proposed site of Cisco Field, which was never formally approved.[12]



Current Products

Past products

Major Areas

The plant size spans the equivalent of about 88 football fields. The plant is configured into six major areas:

  1. Detached Plastics facility fabricating bumpers, instrument panels, interior panels, and others.
  2. Stamping facility that fabricates all visible sheet metal parts.
  3. Welding facility that assembles all metallic parts into one rigid unit.
  4. A detached Paint facility to prepare and paint passenger vehicles.
  5. A detached Painting facility to prepare and paint truck cabs.
  6. Main building that assembles entire vehicles.


Daily tours of the plant were offered free to the public. NUMMI has announced that tours will no longer be offered past February 27, 2009. [13] [14]

See also


  1. ^ a b "NUMMI Milestones". Retrieved 2009-07-13.  
  2. ^ Ken Thomas (2009-08-28). "Toyota plans to end production at Calif. plant". Google News. Retrieved 2009-08-29.  
  3. ^ "Toyota closing Fremont Nummi plant". SFGate. 2009-08-28. Retrieved 2009-08-29.  
  4. ^ "General Motors Statement Regarding Discontinuation of Pontiac Vibe Production at NUMMI Facility". Retrieved 2009-06-20.  
  5. ^ "GM ends 25-yr-old joint venture with Toyota to build cars, trucks at Calif. plant".,0,5435374.story. Retrieved 2009-06-30.  
  6. ^ "UPDATE 1-Toyota may drop U.S. joint venture with GM". Reuters. 2009-07-10. Retrieved 2009-07-13.  
  7. ^ Naoko Fujimura, Tetsuya Komatsu (2009-07-11). "Toyota May Dissolve California Plant Venture Abandoned by GM". Retrieved 2009-07-13.  
  8. ^ Alan Ohnsman and Kae Inoue (2009-08-28). "Toyota Will Shut California Plant in First Closure". Retrieved 2009-08-29.  
  9. ^ Mark Matthews (2009-11-17). "Toyota sales head talks about NUMMI closure". Retrieved 2009-11-22.  
  10. ^ George Avalos (2009-11-16). "NUMMI auto factory closing: End of the line". Retrieved 2009-11-22.  
  11. ^ Tom Abate (2009-11-14). "A huddle to help Nummi workers find new jobs". Retrieved 2009-11-22.  
  12. ^ Carolyn Jones (2010-01-09). "Fremont's new pitch: A's stadium at Nummi site". Retrieved 2010-01-15.  
  13. ^ "Nummi Tours Appointments". Retrieved 2009-06-20.  
  14. ^ "Nummi Tours". Retrieved 2009-06-20.  

External links

Coordinates: 37°29′41.12″N 121°56′41.16″W / 37.4947556°N 121.9447667°W / 37.4947556; -121.9447667


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