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Published: Tuesday, 1/11/2011

Toyota to add engineers at Ann Arbor facility

DETROIT — Toyota Motor Corp., the world's largest car maker, plans to hire additional engineers at its technical center in Ann Arbor as the facility plays a bigger role developing models for the United States, Takeshi Uchiyamada, Toyota's executive vice president in charge of research and product development, said Tuesday at the media previews of the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. He didn't elaborate on how many people may be added.

The Toyota Technical Center in Ann Arbor has taken on increased responsibilities in the last year as the company took steps to improve quality after record recalls battered the brand. Along with developing new vehicles, the center is researching advanced batteries and working with startup Tesla Motors Inc. to design the all-electric RAV4 crossover vehicle.

Toyota has about 1,100 employees at tech centers in Ann Arbor and York, Mich., and in Arizona and California.

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