Toyota Motor Corp. expects its overseas automobile output to exceed its domestic production in 2007 for the first time ever as a result of strong sales abroad.
Toyota projects that global production in the year is likely to top 8.6 million units against its initial projection of 8.47 million units, with its overseas output seen to total 4.3 million units or more. In its production plan announced in late 2006, the company estimated its domestic production in 2007 at 4.27 million units and overseas output at 4.2 million units.
Contrary to strong demand outside Japan, Toyota's domestic production is unlikely to surpass its initial projection. The company’s production plan is likely to be affected by sluggish sales in Japan, with sales in January-August falling 8.6% from a year before.
In September, Japan’s total domestic sales of new cars, trucks and buses fell 9.5% year-on-year for the 27th straight month of decline. Sales of passenger cars fell 4.9% to 285,633 vehicles after rising in August for the first time in more than two years.
Toyota in recent years boosted production in North America and China, while planning to launch output at a plant in Russia at the end of 2007. It is also considering production in such emerging countries as India in 2008 or later.
Among other Japanese automakers, Honda Motor Co. and Nissan Motor Co. have already seen their overseas production exceed domestic output.