Toyo Tire & Rubber Co. Ltd.'s plan to build a tire plant in North America elicits two general responses: Hurray!... and Huh?
Hurray! because its dealers should benefit from having a domestic source of product, especially those hard-to-get performance and light truck sizes.
Huh? because ``general wisdom'' says labor and other operating parameters are too expensive in North America. The amount of capacity being moved offshore is testimony to that.
Toyo said the impetus for opening a U.S. plant is to give it a hedge against currency fluctuations and provide necessary capacity it can't get at its Japanese factories.
The unsaid fact is that Toyo is serving notice it aims to become a bigger player in North America.