Toyota Sues Old GM for Exiting California Joint Venture

Nummi auto plantToyota Motor (TM) is reportedly suing what remains of the discarded assets of the "old GM," officially known as Motors Liquidation Co., for pulling out of the companies' joint venture in California.

Toyota wants $73 million for damages related to the closing of the facility, which was shuttered after GM pulled out of the deal amid bankruptcy restructuring last year, according to news reports.

Toyota is seeking to recoup the amount to cover research and development costs for the jointly developed Pontiac Vibe compact SUV. The model was discontinued in August 2009, just weeks after the new General Motors (GM) emerged from bankruptcy.

The New United Motor Manufacturing, or Nummi, plant in the city of Fremont was one of the last auto manufacturing facilities on the West Coast. In addition to the Vibe, in recent years the plant produced Toyota Corolla, Matrix and Tacoma models. Its closing in April eliminated 4,700 jobs.

The Nummi plant was sold to electric-car maker Tesla Motors (TSLA) in May for $42 million. Tesla is partnering with Toyota to produce an electric version of the Japanese automaker's RAV4 compact SUV.

Earlier this week, Nummi said it is separately seeking $365 million in damages for breach of contract after the former GM pulled out of the joint venture, The Wall Street Journal reported.

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