Asia autos correspondent, Tokyo
Chang-Ran's Feed
Dec 22, 2011

Toyota set to shake off woes with record sales in 2012

TOKYO (Reuters) – Toyota Motor Corp forecast a 20 percent jump in global sales to a record 8.48 million vehicles next year as it claws back from this year’s output losses caused by natural disasters in Japan and Thailand.

Toyota overtook General Motors Co as the world’s top-selling automaker in 2008, but is set to lose that crown this year as supply-chain disruptions from the earthquake and tsunami in Japan and deadly floods in Thailand cut production around the world.

Dec 15, 2011

Japan auto lobby cheers subsidies, says tax change not enough

TOKYO, Dec 15 (Reuters) – Japan’s auto industry body
welcomed the government’s plan to extend incentives on the
purchase of greener cars on Thursday but repeated its demand to
abolish two vehicle-specific taxes that it says is hurting

In addition to the universal 5 percent consumption tax on
all goods and services, Japan imposes a vehicle weight tax and
acquisition tax that make car ownership disproportionately
costly in Japan compared with the rest of the world.

Dec 9, 2011

Toyota halves profit view, counts cost of disasters, yen

TOKYO (Reuters) – Toyota, set to lose its crown as the world’s top-selling automaker this year, more than halved its annual profit forecast to $2.6 billion, reeling from a strong yen and Thai floods that severed its supply lines.

Toyota Motor Corp’s (7203.T: Quote, Profile, Research) inability to make enough cars – production was also ruptured by the earthquake and tsunami in Japan in March – is expected to see it overtaken in sales this year by General Motors Co (GM.N: Quote, Profile, Research) and probably Volkswagen AG (VOWG_p.DE: Quote, Profile, Research).

Dec 9, 2011

Toyota sees lower profits, hit by yen, Thai floods

TOKYO, Dec 9 (Reuters) – Toyota Motor Corp cut its
profit forecast for this business year by more than half on
Friday after it was hit by a stronger yen and widespread output
disruptions due to Thailand’s floods.

Japan’s top automaker said it expects an operating profit of
200 billion yen ($2.6 billion) in the year to March 31, 2012,
down 57 percent from last year and well below a consensus
forecast of 419 billion yen in a survey of 23 analysts by
Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Dec 2, 2011

Toyota enlists BMW diesel tech to save Europe sales

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Blinded by the runaway success of the Prius, Toyota Motor Corp (7203.T: Quote, Profile, Research) mothballed the costly development of new diesel engines and bet the farm on hybrids taking off in Europe, a mistake that has since come back to haunt it.

Bitter rival Nissan Motor Co (7201.T: Quote, Profile, Research) is on course to leapfrog Toyota as the best-selling Asian brand in Europe come March, should this year’s sales trend continue, with Hyundai Motor Co (005380.KS: Quote, Profile, Research) not far behind.

Dec 1, 2011

Toyota, BMW join hands on green technology

TOKYO/FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Toyota Motor Corp and BMW AG agreed on Thursday to join hands on a broad range of environmental technologies, forging a partnership between two engineering stalwarts in the increasingly competitive auto industry.

Under the agreement, the two will work together on lithium-ion battery research that is seen as key to electric cars, while the German premium brand will also supply 1.6 and 2.0 liter diesel engines to Toyota from 2014 in Europe. They will also identify possibilities for other projects.

Dec 1, 2011

Toyota, BMW to jointly develop green technology

TOKYO/FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Toyota Motor Corp (7203.T: Quote, Profile, Research) and BMW AG (BMWG.DE: Quote, Profile, Research) said on Thursday they would work together on a broad range of advanced environmental car technologies including the joint development of lithium-ion batteries for electric vehicles.

BMW will also supply 1.6 and 2.0 litre diesel engines to Toyota beginning in 2014 for cars to be sold in Europe, while the two have agreed to identify and discuss other possible joint projects.

Dec 1, 2011

Toyota, BMW to hold briefing; green-tech ties eyed

TOKYO (Reuters) – Toyota Motor Corp and BMW AG said they would hold a joint news conference at 4 p.m. (0700 GMT) in Tokyo on Thursday, as sources this week flagged a likely cooperation between the two in green car technology.

Toyota and BMW did not give the subject of the briefing, but a source familiar with the matter said earlier in the week that the two were poised to cooperate in developing electric car batteries, while media reports have also raised potential deals in diesel engines and hybrids.

Nov 30, 2011

Japan car makers seek to keep tech lead as yen bites

TOKYO, Nov 30 (Reuters) – Japanese automakers unveiled
futuristic concepts such as car-powered houses and rechargeable
sports cars at the Tokyo Motor Show, but the stubbornly strong
yen cast a pall over the industry, threatening their chances of
keeping the lead in next-generation technology.

The biennial auto show, which opened to the media on
Wednesday, showcased the usual array of green cars such as
electric vehicles (EVs) and fuel-cell cars, while top Japanese
brands went further to depict how cars could eventually link up
to the grid and store energy in their batteries as a power

Nov 29, 2011

Toyota aims to take on EVs with plug-in Prius hybrid

TOKYO (Reuters) – Toyota Motor Corp said it would start taking orders for its first plug-in hybrid car, the Prius PHV, in Japan on Tuesday, touting it as the world’s most practical green car and aiming to steal thunder from pure battery-powered vehicles.

Unveiling the production-ready car ahead of the Tokyo Motor Show this week, Toyota said the rechargeable Prius PHV would be priced from 3.2 million yen ($41,000) in Japan, higher than what it had flagged two years ago but cheaper than Nissan Motor Co’s Leaf electric car, which costs 3.76 million yen before subsidies.

    • About Chang-Ran

      "I have been covering the Japanese auto industry since 2002, broadening coverage to the Asian region in 2003."
      Joined Reuters:
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