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Jan 30, 2013

Toyota to recall 1 million vehicles for airbag, wiper glitches

TOKYO (Reuters) – Toyota Motor Corp will recall 1.1 million cars globally for two separate defects, including 752,000 Corolla and Corolla Matrix vehicles in the United States to fix airbags that could be deployed inadvertently, the automaker said on Wednesday.

It is the third Toyota recall since October to involve more than a million cars, and it comes as the company tries to recover from a damaged reputation following a series of recalls between 2009 and 2011 that were related to unintended acceleration problems.

Jan 24, 2013

Toyota, BMW to research lithium-air battery

TOKYO (Reuters) – Toyota Motor Corp (7203.T: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) and BMW AG (BMWG.DE: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) will jointly research a lithium-air battery expected to be more powerful than the lithium-ion batteries used in many hybrid and electric vehicles, the two firms said.

The two companies will also work on a fuel cell vehicle system, which includes a hydrogen tank and motor, by 2020, they said on Thursday.

Jan 24, 2013

Mitsubishi recalls 14,700 electric cars globally over brakes

TOKYO, Jan 24 (Reuters) – Mitsubishi Motors Corp
said it would recall about 14,700 electric vehicles (EV)
globally due to a brake problem unique to the electric-motor
powered cars in one of the biggest callbacks involving the new
generation of eco-friendly cars.

Mitsubishi Motors said that in Japan it would recall nearly
3,400 i-MiEV electric vehicles, as well as more than 2,400
MINICAB-MiEV vehicles.

Jan 23, 2013

For Japan’s ANA, Boeing 787 grounding may dent growth plan

TOKYO (Reuters) – All Nippon Airways (9202.T: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), which currently has the biggest fleet of Boeing Co (BA.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) 787 Dreamliner jets, may have to scale back its next 2-year plan as it weighs the mounting cost of the new aircraft’s grounding.

Asia’s biggest airline by revenue and a key launch customer for Boeing’s newest plane, has put the technologically advanced 787 at the center of its growth strategy, keen to ally its brand to the lightweight, fuel-efficient jetliner.

Jan 15, 2013

Toyota, Honda spice up small cars for the U.S. market

DETROIT (Reuters) – Japanese automakers are spicing up their compact and subcompact lineups in the United States, with Toyota Motor Corp’s Furia concept car hinting at more aggressive styling for the 2014 Corolla and Honda Motor Co taking subcompact cars to the next level with its Fit-based SUV.

Toyota, Japan’s biggest automaker, gave a glimpse of what the new Corolla, likely to go on sale later this year, could look like when it unveiled the Furia concept sedan this week at the Detroit auto show.

Jan 15, 2013

Japan automakers stay optimistic about U.S. sales in 2013

DETROIT (Reuters) – Japanese automakers are optimistic about even better sales in the United States this year, helped by a weakening yen and product launch cycles, after posting robust sales last year as they left behind the effects of natural disasters in 2011.

Toyota Motor Corp, which on Monday became certain to regain the world’s top sales spot for the first time since 2010, sees for this year the strongest U.S. sales since 2008, an executive told Reuters on Monday.

Jan 15, 2013

Japan-China tension weighs on Nissan investments

DETROIT, Jan 14 (Reuters) – Nissan Motor Co. will
remain cautious about future Chinese investments including
Infiniti brand production until the country’s relations with
Japan improve, Chief Executive Carlos Ghosn said on Monday.

Ghosn was speaking at the Detroit auto show after the three
main Japanese automakers all said an anti-Japan consumer
backlash continued to depress their Chinese sales by between 16
and 30 percent.

Jan 13, 2013

Toyota drops “plain vanilla” styling with eye on Hyundai’s rise

TOYOTA, Japan, Jan 14 (Reuters) – When Tokuo Fukuichi was
brought back to Toyota Motor Corp to become head of
design, he was given a simple directive from President Akio
Toyoda: make Toyota cars simple and cool. He took a risk and
objected.

“I said, look, Mr. President, just cool is not good enough,”
Fukuichi told Reuters. “Toyota had already tried hard to fix
ugly parts and make them look better. What Toyota lacks the most
is character.”

Dec 26, 2012

Analysis: Japan’s yen offensive may give Toyota an edge over Hyundai

TOKYO (Reuters) – When Toyota Motor Corp (7203.T: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) President Akio Toyoda visited northern Japan in July last year and announced a $24 million engine plant expansion, some analysts saw it as evidence of a flawed strategy that put patriotism above profitability.

At the time, Toyota was struggling to rebuild its supply base after the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami and the yen was climbing toward a post-war record high against the dollar.

Dec 19, 2012

Japanese automakers rally on hopes of weaker yen

TOKYO, Dec 19 (Reuters) – Hopes that Japan’s central bank
would obey incoming prime minister Shinzo Abe’s call to print
more money and weaken the yen sparked a sharp rally on Wednesday
among auto stocks, lifting Tokyo’s market to its biggest gain in
over a year.

Honda Motor led the gains, rising 6 percent, while
Nissan Motor climbed 5.5 percent and Toyota Motor
rose 3.5 percent. The three stocks helped push the
benchmark Nikkei Stock Average up 2.4 percent to above
10,000 for the first time in almost nine months.

    • About Yoko

      "Based in Tokyo since 2007, I have been covering politics in the world's third-biggest economy, as well as Japan's nuclear disaster, energy issues and diplomacy."
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