By on February 13, 2012

Which country is Toyota’s second largest export hub? If all goes according to the wishes of Yoshimi Inaba, president of Toyota Motor North America, then that will be North America. Toyota has an annual production capacity of 1.8 million vehicles in the U.S. alone and wants to export increasing numbers to the world, Inaba told The Nikkei [sub].

According to Inaba,

“The U.S. has thick layers of parts suppliers. It has a huge workforce, and energy costs are falling as the development of shale gas and other types of natural gas progress. In other words, the U.S. offers both quality and cost advantages in everything from raw materials to assembly.

Some of Toyota’s export destinations are surprising:

South Korea, which has forged a free trade agreement with the U.S., comes to my mind. But its scale is small. Exporting to Russia and Australia makes better sense, given that we make larger vehicles favored by U.S. consumers anyway and if trading terms are taken into account. Trucks can be shipped to the Middle East. We must think of exporting to China, too, even though our production capacity is large there.

Non-U.S. companies are taking the lead in exporting from the U.S. Last month, we heard that the BMW Group is the country’s largest automotive exporter to non-NAFTA countries.


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6 Comments on “Toyota Steps Up Exports. From North America...”

  • avatar
    Chicago Dude

    The “country” of North America?

    Better watch out Bertel, the tin foil hat types might lash out at you.

  • avatar

    What is amazing is how little of this is going on. Number of vehicles exported from the US and Canada to the rest of the world has been minuscule. Whenever it is done, it seems that only small, boutique importers are doing it, charging absolutely exorbitant prices in the process. Surely demand could be increased if efforts are made to export on a large scale. There are plenty of substandard but very practical and durable cars that could compete purely on price. There is also a number of world class, truly desirable models that could be successfully marketed at a fair price.

  • avatar

    How long before we start hearing complaints from other countries that their jobs are being exported to America, never to return?

    Leave it to the Japanese to remind us what we’ve got going for us: ample raw materials within our borders, suppliers with high technology, massive energy supplies waiting to be tapped, and a large, educated workforce looking for work.

  • avatar

    Export to Australia. (1) There goes a RHD vehicle line, so that Toyota will have to install a RHD line in NA. (simple, just remove the line from Altona and ship it to NA),(2) So Toyota wanting goverment money to stay in Victoria for the “long haul” was a load of bollocks,(never mind, govement money was never intended to keep you here, just placate the unions) (3) Toyota HQ does what it pleases and be damned the local operations.

    • 0 avatar

      For now and the immediate future, at least, Camry remains Australian-built, and I think they’re also expanding the Russian Camry plant. The Australia and Russia references have to do with Toyota’s announcement that, as of late 2013, Princeton, Indiana and China will be the sole sources for Highlander production, with the U.S.-built versions exported to Australia and Russia.

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