Asia autos correspondent, Tokyo
Chang-Ran's Feed
Sep 30, 2011

Volkswagen and Suzuki’s crumbling partnership

FRANKFURT/TOKYO (Reuters) – Germany’s Volkswagen had until the end of Friday to retract its accusation that strategic partner Japan’s Suzuki Motor breached their contract as a public and bitter spat raged between the two car makers.

Osamu Suzuki, chief executive of the eponymous car maker, has demanded VW sell its stake and end the partnership that has become a millstone round its neck, claiming Volkswagen harmed Suzuki’s reputation.

Sep 27, 2011

Japan auto lobby cuts 2011 sales outlook by 10 pct

TOKYO, Sept 27 (Reuters) – Japan’s auto lobby cut its
forecast for this year’s domestic vehicle sales by 10 percent
and repeated its calls for a weaker yen and lower automobile
taxes to help the industry and, by extension, the country’s
fragile economy.

Japanese automakers have been hit by a triple whammy of
shrinking domestic sales, a historically strong yen and a
once-in-a-century earthquake and tsunami that caused
unprecedented production and sales disruptions this year.

Sep 22, 2011

Suzuki hands Volkswagen ultimatum to retract claim

TOKYO/FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Suzuki Motor Corp (7269.T: Quote, Profile, Research) gave Volkswagen (VOWG_p.DE: Quote, Profile, Research) until the end of the month to publicly retract a claim the Japanese car maker had violated their contract, stepping up a war of words as it tries to break off equity ties with its estranged partner.

Suzuki, Japan’s fourth-largest automaker and owned 19.9 percent by Volkswagen, said it sent a letter on Thursday in Chief Executive Osamu Suzuki’s name addressed to his German counterpart, Martin Winterkorn.

Sep 22, 2011

Suzuki tells VW to retract claim it breached contract

TOKYO/FRANKFURT, Sept 22 (Reuters) – Suzuki Motor Corp
demanded that Volkswagen AG (VOWG_p.DE: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) publicly
retract a claim that the Japanese car maker had violated their
contract, stepping up a war of words as it tries to break off
equity ties with its estranged partner.

Suzuki, Japan’s fourth-largest automaker and owned 19.9
percent by Volkswagen, said it sent a letter on Thursday in
Chief Executive Osamu Suzuki’s name addressed to his German
counterpart, Martin Winterkorn.

Sep 20, 2011

Nissan CEO: may reverse strategy due to yen

KANDA-MACHI, Japan, Sept 20 (Reuters) – Nissan Motor Co
may need to rethink its strategy of building at least 1
million vehicles a year in Japan if the yen is trading around
today’s levels in six months’ time, CEO Carlos Ghosn said on
Tuesday.

Despite the yen’s historic strength and the losses it has
forced on exports, automakers such as Nissan and Toyota Motor
Corp have pledged to keep a minimum level of production
at home to protect Japanese manufacturing and in the hope that
the yen will weaken.

Sep 19, 2011

City cars to stir up competition in Indonesia

JAKARTA, Sept 19 (Reuters) – Joko Chahjono, a senior vice
president at Bangkok Bank in Jakarta, owns at least 10 Toyotas
and has never bought anything else. Seeking comfort above all in
a car, Chahjono adores his Camry sedan and is thinking of buying
his first Lexus from the Japanese carmaker’s luxury line.

Admiration of Toyota Motor Corp (7203.T: Quote, Profile, Research) is widespread in
Indonesia, where the world’s biggest automaker accounted for a
staggering 37 percent of the market last year with sales
concentrated in the popular multipurpose vehicle (MPV) segment.

Sep 19, 2011

Analysis: City cars to stir up competition in Indonesia

JAKARTA (Reuters) – Joko Chahjono, a senior vice president at Bangkok Bank in Jakarta, owns at least 10 Toyotas and has never bought anything else. Seeking comfort above all in a car, Chahjono adores his Camry sedan and is thinking of buying his first Lexus from the Japanese carmaker’s luxury line.

Admiration of Toyota Motor Corp is widespread in Indonesia, where the world’s biggest automaker accounted for a staggering 37 percent of the market last year with sales concentrated in the popular multipurpose vehicle (MPV) segment.

Sep 17, 2011

Honda targets 60 pct share of Indonesia motorcycle market

JAKARTA, Sept 17 (Reuters) – Honda Motor Co aims to
expand its share of Indonesia’s big motorcycle market to 60
percent from 46 percent before the decade is up by increasing
its edge over arch-rival Yamaha Motor , the
chief of its Indonesian venture said.

Honda, the world’s top motorcycle maker, increased its
annual output capacity in Indonesia to 4.3 million vehicles in
July from 3.5 million at the end of last year, scrambling to
keep pace with surging demand.

Sep 13, 2011

GM Indonesia sees minimum five-fold growth in 3 yrs

JAKARTA, Sep 13 (Reuters) – General Motors Co (GM.N: Quote, Profile, Research) expects
at least five-fold growth in its sales in Indonesia by 2014 when
its reinstated factory will be producing at its full capacity of
40,000 vehicles annually, the head of its local operations said
on Tuesday.

The U.S. auto giant announced last month that it would
reactivate its factory in West Java, Indonesia, to build a
“people mover” van for Southeast Asia from 2013 and raise its
position in the fast-growing car market dominated by Japanese
brands. [ID:nN1E77B0AR]

Sep 13, 2011

Toyota says to invest $337 mln in Indonesia expansion

JAKARTA, Sept 13 (Reuters) – Toyota Motor Corp said
on Tuesday it would invest a total $337 million in Indonesia,
including in building a new 70,000-vehicles-a-year factory in
its second move this year to expand in the fast-growing car
market.

The world’s biggest automaker said the factory would produce
vehicles such as its Kijang and Innova, with annual capacity at
the new plant rising to 180,000 units by 2013.

    • About Chang-Ran

      "I have been covering the Japanese auto industry since 2002, broadening coverage to the Asian region in 2003."
      Hometown:
      Tokyo
      Joined Reuters:
      2000
      Languages:
      English, Japanese, Spanish
    • Contact Chang-Ran

      Phone:
      +81-3-6441-1804
    • Follow Chang-Ran