Japanese automaker Toyota could be forced to halt production at its Burnaston plant in central England, if Britain were to leave the European Union without a trade deal.
Their UK plant produced no fewer than 150,000 vehicles last year, with about 90% of them being shipped within the EU. Meanwhile, the redesigned Auris (which will be called Corolla moving forward) is also scheduled to go into production in Burnaston, as reported by Automotive News Europe.
“My view is that if Britain crashes out of the EU at the end of March, we will see production stops in our factory,” said the plant’s managing director, Marvin Cooke in an interview with the BBC. “It could be hours, days, weeks, even months.”
The likes of BMW and JLR (Jaguar Land Rover) have also warned about possible production issues if the UK leaves without a trade arrangement, while most businesses haven’t even carried out a risk assessment regarding the impact of Brexit, according to the British Chambers of Commerce.
The UK is set to leave the EU in less than 200 days, which could easily coincide with the early 2019 launch date of the redesigned Auris/Corolla, a car that’s expected to bring “a whole new dimension to our next generation C-segment models,” as per Toyota Europe boss, Dr. Johan van Zyl.
In Europe, the Corolla will be offered as a five-door hatchback, a wagon (Touring Sports) and a sedan.