Starting line

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Secretary of state for transport Geoff Hoon has launched the start of production for the new Avensis at Toyota’s Burnaston Plant in Derbyshire.

The company hopes the Avensis model will reduce its CO2 fleet average using the Toyota Optimal Drive system.

According to Toyota, the technology will decrease emissions from by 10 to 26 per cent by providing a new line-up of Valvematic petrol engines to enhance the existing Variable Valve Timing-intelligent (VVT-i) system.

The launch of the new Avensis is expected to prove beneficial to the economy and will represent an annual spend of more than £500m with UK business partners.

Commenting on the event, Geoff Hoon said: ‘The investment Toyota has made in this new model is a real vote of confidence in both the workers at the Burnaston and Deeside plants and in the future of car manufacturing in the UK.

‘The start of production marks a confident new chapter for the company, which is particularly important in these challenging times, but it also represents a vital boost for local jobs and the regional economy.’