File picture: Mick Tsikas / Reuters.

Sydney - Toyota will shut down its plant in Melbourne on Tuesday after manufacturing cars in Australia for over 50 years, resulting in the loss of some 2600 jobs.

Victorian Industry Minister Wade Noonan said it was "a terribly sad day" and "an end of an era for manufacturing" in the state.

Trade union leader Dave Smith told reporters outside the Toyota factory at Altona North, where the final Camry was set to roll off the production line on Tuesday, the event was a "very tragic day for Victoria because today marks the end of the car manufacturing industry."

Toyota, which began manufacturing in Australia in 1963, is the second car company to shut down in Australia in two years. Ford ceased production in Victoria's Geelong after 91 years last year.

Matthew Kinson, who worked at the Toyota plant for 19 years, said workers will mark the closure with a private barbecue.

"A lot of us haven't had a job interview here for 20-odd years... So that's going to be a little bit difficult because the reality of that is hard," he told Australian broadcaster ABC.

"But I'm not concerned that people won't find work coming from here."

The worker's union said as many as 2600 workers may not be able to find new jobs, despite Toyota's job skills training program.

Smith said just 35 percent of Ford's workers had found permanent, full-time work.

Noonan said the state government had been preparing for the closure, spending more than 100 million dollars on assistance programs for the workers.

General Motors is is also planning to shut its South Australia plant on October 20, marking the end of all car manufacturing in Australia.