Subaru is planning another major investment at its Lafayette plant. At an unveiling ceremony for the new Subaru Ascent, Subaru of Indiana Automotive announced the automaker will invest more than $140 million into production of the SUV and plans to create up to 200 jobs. The company, which has more than 5,600 associates in Lafayette, says the move will help meet growing demand for mid-level vehicles in North America. The announcement comes two years after a previous expansion involving more than 1,000 new jobs.

SIA says, over the past four years, it has invested more than $1.3 billion and added 2,000 jobs.

Subaru debuted the Ascent earlier this week at the Los Angeles Auto Show. SIA also produces the Outback, Legacy and Impreza models. The company says it will purchase new machinery and equipment to produce the three-row crossover vehicle. With the added capacity, SIA says it will produce approximately 400,000 vehicles in 2018. Since the plant began operations 30 years ago, it has produced more than five million vehicles.

Governor Eric Holcomb, who joined SIA for today’s announcement, says the automaker has sparked economic growth for 30 years, adding he’s "confident they will witness continued success as we work to take Indiana to the next level by growing our economy and developing the skills of our workforce."

The Indiana Economic Development Corp. has offered the automaker up to $500,000 in training grants based on the job creation plans. Tippecanoe County and the city of Lafayette are also supporting the project. Lafayette Mayor Tony Roswarski says SIA has shown itself to be an employer that "offers jobs that can translate to lifetime careers."

When SIA made the $140 million investment announcement in 2015, Executive Vice President Tom Easterday said the company’s 28 direct suppliers in the state and many more indirect suppliers would "grow right along with us." In 2013, the company announced $400 million expansion plans involving a new paint shop and upgrades to its engine assembly and stamping operations.