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Fuji Heavy to end Toyota model output in U.S. in ’16, focus on Subaru

JIJI

Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd. plans to end production of Toyota Motor Corp. vehicles at its Indiana plant at the end of 2016, sources said.

This is because Fuji Heavy needs to increase production of its own vehicles, which are running short in the U.S. market due to surging demand, the sources said Thursday. Toyota is Fuji Heavy’s top shareholder.

Fuji Heavy has been making 100,000 Toyota Camrys a year at the Indiana plant.

All together it can produce 270,000 vehicles a year and is running at full capacity as Fuji Heavy is expecting to sell 420,000 of its own autos, Subaru models, to hit a record high for the fifth year in a row. U.S. sales account for about half of its worldwide total.

Toyota will have to find an alternative. Its Kentucky plant, another production base for the Camry, is already running close to full bore.

Toyota in 2005 acquired Fuji Heavy shares that had been released by General Motors Co.

Following the capital alliance, Fuji Heavy started production of Toyota cars at the Indiana plant in 2007 at a time when it was operating at a low rate.