The ad jingle for the 2014 Toyota Highlander is it “ain’t got no room for boring,” sung by a carful of Muppets. The relative excitement of the midsize SUV is debatable, but its sales success and contribution to Toyota’s bottom line is not. Highlander sales are up 16 percent year-over-year from January through July 2014. To help meet strong demand for the redesigned SUV, Toyota will make a $100-million investment in its Princeton, Indiana, production facilities and add 300 additional jobs by summer 2016. The contribution brings Toyota’s cumulative investment in the Princeton East and West production facilities to $4 billion. The Highlander is Toyota’s second best-selling SUV after the compact RAV4.
Toyota Indiana consists of two production lines, the East Plant and West Plant. The Princeton West plant currently builds the Highlander and the fullsize Sequoia SUV. The East plant builds the Sienna minivan. The additional production capacity for the Highlander will be added to the East plant. The added investment and staffing is expected to increase annual output of the Highlander by 30,000 units.
Princeton-built Highlanders are sold in North America as well as exported to Australia, New Zealand, and Eastern Europe.