NAGOYA – Toyota Motor Corp. will aim to boost sales in emerging markets from 3.7 million vehicles in 2012 to 5 million in the future, a company executive said Monday as the automaker predicts its global sales will reach a record 10 million units.
Toyota will aim to strengthen its business and boost profitability in each emerging country, including China, based on local production, Yasumori Ihara, executive vice president in charge of business in emerging markets, told reporters in Nagoya, adding the company is also looking to make inroads into new markets such as Myanmar.
“Compared with North America, Europe or Japan, where buyers are mostly replacement buyers, it’s mostly first-time buyers in emerging markets,” said Ihara. “It’s where the future growth is.”
Toyota and other foreign automakers are expanding in developing countries, where increasing numbers of consumers are becoming rich enough to afford cars for the first time. Nissan Motor Co. will introduce its first Datsun model this month in India after reviving the marque as a budget brand for emerging markets.
Toyota’s group sales stood at around 9.75 million units in 2012, up 22.6 percent from the previous year, regaining the top position it relinquished in 2011 in terms of worldwide car sales by volume.
Satoshi Ozawa, who oversees Toyota’s business in developed countries, reiterated that the automaker plans to maintain domestic production of 3 million units a year in Japan.
On Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s economic policies, Executive Vice President Nobuyori Kodaira said the weaker yen has created a “good” business environment.
Toyota is reviewing its forecasts for global sales and production for the 2013 fiscal year, Kodaira said, without being more specific.
New car sales off 16%
Japan’s new vehicle sales in June, excluding minivehicles, dropped 15.8 percent from a year earlier to 266,913 units, the Japan Mini Vehicles Association said Monday.
Car sales fell 17.5 percent to 233,176 units, while truck sales edged down 1.1 percent to 32,963 units, the Japan Automobile Dealers Association said.
Sales of new minivehicles with an engine displacement of up to 660cc shed 2.3 percent in the reporting month to 183,915 units.