Thirty years after launching production of its high-volume Camry sedan in the U.S., Toyota found itself late last month warning the public that the Trump administration's proposal for tariffs on imported automotive materials would result in an $1,800 price increase on the car.
According to data compiled by NHTSA, the Camry is made up of 45 percent imported content, even though the automaker has spent decades developing a North American supply chain and invested more than $25 billion on U.S. vehicle assembly operations, engine plants and transmission production.
Toyota's North American purchasing management, now in Ann Arbor, Mich., has been attempting to localize vehicle content since the early 1990s, when Toyota and other Japanese automakers were criticized by U.S. politicians for not buying enough U.S. parts content. In response, in 1992, Toyota publicized a goal of buying $3.8 billion in content from U.S. suppliers by 1994. Last year, the company purchased $40.7 billion.