Toyota South Africa Motors says the expansion of its Atlas Road parts distribution warehouse in the East Rand is well underway.

The Japanese firm’s local arm is investing some R365-million to double the size of the existing site (from 40 000m² to 80 000m²) and create what it describes as an “ultra-facility”.

Once completed, it is expected to be the largest automotive parts’ warehouse in the southern hemisphere, supporting more than 250 dealerships in the southern African region, as well as 70 international destinations where SA-built Toyota models are sold.

Leon Theron, senior vice-president of sales and marketing at Toyota SA Motors, says “the sheer size and scale of the warehouse we are building is a clear indication that we are committed to the South Africa automotive sector, as well playing regional hub to the rest of the continent”.

Toyota SA Motors president and CEO, Andrew Kirby, adds the “investment will also strengthen our position as a Toyota regional manufacturing hub with an ability to fully support any locally manufactured vehicle, regardless of its destination”.

The company says progress on the construction site was “slightly hampered” by the COVID-19 lockdown but adds it is “positive” the facility will be officially opened in 2021.

In February 2020, Toyota SA Motors announced it planned to produce a “new passenger-car model” at its Prospecton plant in Durban after a fresh R2,43-billion investment.