By on February 27, 2013

 

Contrary to lore, American cars are a hot export product that is in high demand abroad – as long as there are foreign badges on the Made in America cars.  For the first time, Toyota will ship U.S.-made Venza to Russia and China, says The Nikkei [sub].

Toyota will ship 4,000 Venza to Russia, 1,000 to Ukraine, and “several thousand” to China. By 2014, Toyota expects to be exporting 150,000 vehicles a year from the U.S., 20 percent more than in 2012.

In December, TTAC reported that transplants export cars in surprising numbers. BMW exported 70 percent of the 276,000 cars it built 2011 in Spartanburg, SC, helping South Carolina overtake Michigan as the No. 1 exporter of automobiles. Mercedes-Benz exports half of its cars made at its Birmingham, Ala. plant to countries outside NAFTA. Honda wants to become a net exporter of American made vehicles. At Nissan, “the numbers are trending toward Nissan being a net exporter,” a spokesman in Yokohama said.

All these exports create American jobs for Americans in America, and they improve the American trade balance.  In a few minutes, UAW operatives will tell you it’s all wrong.

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33 Comments on “America To Increase Car Exports. With A Little Help From Toyota...”


  • avatar
    bd2

    Eh, the Toyota exports to Russia, China are not even a drop in the bucket and will remain that way as long as those markets have high auto import tariffs (basically, Toyota will sell models that they don’t produce locally in China or Russia).

    The vast majority of US-built Toyotas (Hondas, etc.) for export will be to Japan and a lesser extent South Korea (since there are no auto tariffs on imports and US production is cheaper than Japanese production).

    • 0 avatar
      spw

      this is not really true. Most of the exports will go to Arab countries where Toyota’s sell like crazy (40% market share in many) as well as Russia and Ukraine… These market likes big petrol powered cars and have cheap fuel.

      Japan does not like large cars and China has tax laws against engines larger than 2.0.

  • avatar

    Every time I see a Video clip on the TV of a War Zone like places in Africa, one see’s many half-ton Trucks with Soldiers in the back and the name plate on the Truck is Toyota, so it looks like Toyota products are well received in the Third World!

  • avatar
    missinginvlissingen

    I’m sure this is a very interesting post, but I am unable to read past the terrible grammar in Toyota’s ad copy.

    “Just introduced yesterday, what percentage…” makes no sense.
    “Just introduced yesterday, the 2014 Tundra…” would be correct.
    Better yet, move the “just introduced” phrase closer to the thing that was just introduced.

    I’m no grammar cop, but this is just egregious. I hope quality control at Toyota’s factories is better than it is in their marketing department.

    • 0 avatar
      marc

      There is absolutley nothing wrong with the grammar in the ad. You may not like the style of the sentence, but it is grammatically correct.

      Now for Bertel to not pluralize Venza (TWICE!) is an egregious error.

      People are often afraid to pluralize proper names, but the rules of pluralization still apply.
      One Venza, Two (or 4,000) Venzas
      One Toyota, Two Toyotas
      One Prius, Two Priuses (That is, until those lame Internet folks decided to say Prii. The rule states that proper names ending in ‘us’ get pluralized with an ‘es,’ like Tauruses, not Tauri. But I digress.)

  • avatar
    360joules

    “For the first time, Toyota will ship U.S.-made Venza to Russia and China”

    And they can have every one of them. I just sat in the back seat of one.

    • 0 avatar
      seth1065

      I would take that I had to rent a yaris today what a pos but I guess for the price to buy one they may be ok, but boy did the Chevy sonic I rented last month seem a whole lot better

      • 0 avatar
        NormSV650

        Yaris and Corolla are about the last cars in their respective segment to receive a work over.

      • 0 avatar
        APaGttH

        Yaris is AWFUL. The Sonic and Fiesta are at the top of the class, upcoming Fit update may change the game

        • 0 avatar
          CJinSD

          The Fiesta finished dead last in the only comparison test I ever saw it participate in. The Fit won that one and the one when it went up against the Sonic. The similar Mazda 2 finished ahead of the Fiesta as well, being so much lighter that it was faster with 20 less horsepower. This was a test of manual models, so the Fiesta wasn’t even crippled by its basement dwelling DCT. With 173 total points to the Mazda’s 197 and the Honda’s 200, it was pretty much a clobber. Maybe it sells well with good availability and a Ford showroom on every corner, but it isn’t a competitive entry.

          http://media.caranddriver.com/files/ford-fiesta-vs-honda-fit-vs-mazda-2-comparison-test-car-and-driver2011-ford-fiesta-2010-honda-fit-2011-mazda-2-ego.pdf

          The Yaris was third of six in its comparison showing. It scored 191 points to the Fit’s 203 and the Sonic’s 201. Even the 5th place Kia Rio5 scored a higher percentage of the Fit’s total in this test than the Fiesta did in its contest.

          http://media.caranddriver.com/files/best-small-cars-two-great-ones-two-good-ones-and-two-other-ones-comparison-test-car-and-driver2012-hyundai-accent-se-2012-kia-rio5-sx.pdf

          There could be a set of priorities that would make an objective car buyer prefer the Sonic to the Fit, but the Fit is still the best in class and the Fiesta is something of a dog. The only problem with the Fit is that Honda doesn’t want to sell them here, since they cost more than Civics to bring to market. Getting a deal would take quite a bit of luck and technique. A friend had to use a broker after getting the rub from three dealers and still paid more for his Fit Sport w/ manual transmission than I could get a Civic LX for over the phone. Ford dealers advertise $18,205 Fiestas for $2,995 down, $79 a month and a $12,015 residual after two years. If you buy the car at the end, that works out to a 7% discount AND 0% interest for two years. Even better would be to walk away and let the dealer try to get 66% of MSRP for a two year old Fiesta. It doesn’t seem very likely when they’re advertised new for similar money.

          • 0 avatar
            Thavash

            Bought a brand new Jazz ( our Fit ) for my wife 18 months ago. Don’t regret it at all , its fun to drive and has lots of space for the size. Only thing that might annoy some people is that it’s slightly buzzy at highway speeds. A 6 speed gearbox might cure that.

  • avatar
    DeadWeight

    It’s a good thing these cars are being exported given the trend for American incomes.

    Let’s hope the markets where these are being exported to hold up.

    New Cars Out of Reach for Many Americans

    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/cars-increasingly-reach-many-americans-145957880.html

    • 0 avatar
      APaGttH

      No no no – UAW salaries on Tier I = evil.

      Making $17 an hour = good.

      As everyone in this feckin’ country continues to think everyone is overpaid (except themselves) the wheels will eventually, permanently fall off our consumer oriented economy. Thirteen years of stagnant wages combined with an ever weakening dollar and spiraling non-CPI inflation along with out of control medical and college costs is got the people in a chokehold, and they can’t even see it.

    • 0 avatar
      PintoFan

      New cars have always been out of reach for a lot of people. New car sales have continued to grow ever since the bottom of the financial crisis, and they don’t show signs of stopping any time soon.

      The Yahoo piece claims that the average new car price is $30,500 and and the average monthly payment $550. While that may be true in the aggregate if you factor in luxury makes, the cars people actually buy (Camrys, F-150s, Elantras, Civics, Sentras, etc) are nowhere near that expensive, especially not in terms of monthly payment.

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        If one assumes that the data presented in the article are even roughly correct, you seemed to have missed the central point that in only one major U.S. city (which they admittedly don’t define, but I’d bet it’s based on population count) can a household having median-level income afford to purchase a new car priced at or above 30k.

        If you want to dissect and destroy the methodology used to present this claim or the accuracy of the data compiled to make it, that’s an entirely different gambit, and have at it (I’d actually like to see such a refutation, to be honest, since I don’t believe anything more than 1/2 of what I read and am very leery of statistics as presented by most media sources).

        • 0 avatar
          PintoFan

          >can a household having median-level income afford to purchase a new car priced at or above 30k.

          That’s a meaningless data point. As I already stated, there are an enormous number of new cars available for less than that amount of money. The $30k figure is a mostly arbitrary number created by adding a large number of widely-ranging vehicles together and creating an average. If you compute the cost of a new BMW or Audi alongside Camrys, Civics, and Sonics to determine an average, the number you wind up with will be hopelessly distorted.

  • avatar
    PintoFan

    It would be interesting if you were to do an article about Big 3 cars exported from America to other countries, but I’m not going to hold my breath. That doesn’t exactly fit with the going agenda.

    • 0 avatar
      CJinSD

      Like everything involving Detroit, there is too much smoke and there are too many mirrors to get a real picture from available information. Are cars sold in Mexico and Canada exports? If so, does that mean we can stop pretending Canada is part of the US for domestic content purposes? Can Mexican made Fords and Dodges be banished from UAW parking lots? Jeep counts cars built in Egypt and Venezuela as being exports, even though they’re produced for their local markets. That BMW builds more cars(193,000) for export in South Carolina than the Detroit three do in Michigan really is the story here. You see agenda where there is only reality.

      • 0 avatar
        PintoFan

        I’d like to know your source for the BMW claim. And anyway, that’s why I asked the question. Certainly, the well-connected journalists of TTAC should be able to follow up on such a relevant and interesting data point with reasonable effort. That they don’t perhaps says more about this blog’s priorities than they would like to admit. Or maybe they don’t really care about maintaining a facade of objectivity anymore, which is why the egregious cheap shot at the UAW was included.

  • avatar
    Beerboy12

    So the high cost of labor does not affect a companies ability to export then… Gosh! hoodathunk?

    • 0 avatar
      CJinSD

      High cost labor with flexible work rules and no legacy costs are more competitive than high wages with unproductive labor and high legacy costs. That’s why it is viable for the foreign brands to build cars for export in a country whose domestic producers cannot.

  • avatar
    CJinSD

    I’d like to see a story about who the big importers really are. How many vehicles do GM, Ford, and Fiat import into the US from Canada, Mexico, Korea, Italy, Australia, Belgium, and Germany? How does that compare to the foreign brands in total vehicles with final assembly in other countries? I think it would be a hilariously bitter pill for Detroit cheerleaders to swallow.

    • 0 avatar
      PintoFan

      I don’t think it would be terribly surprising. For all the ballyhoo about domestic production, the Japanese still import a whole lot of cars. Most of Toyota’s hybrids, all of the Scion models, all of the Lexuses, and a fair number of passenger cars are all foreign made. Honda is a little better, but not much. Hyundai might well be the leader at this point.

      It’s kind of odd and vaguely disturbing to hear the Japanese fanboys become cheerleaders for domestic production this late in the game. It’s like they think the rest of us have no memory.

  • avatar
    billfrombuckhead

    Isn’t the Tundra an obsolete embarassment? The new 2013 Pentastar Ram beats the 2013 Tundra V6 by 4 mpg and beats the 2013 Tacoma V6 by 2 mpg EPA combined while having more horsepower! Heck a 2013 Hemi Ram will get better hwy mpg than a V6 Tundra. The there’s Ram’s very good showing in the latest J.D. Power survey. Just saying.
    http://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/Find.do?action=sbs&id=33353&id=33194&id=33113

    • 0 avatar
      GarbageMotorsCo.

      I’ll take my Tundra built in Texas over the RAM built in Hermosilo, Mexico. I’d rather support my own Country.

      • 0 avatar
        billfrombuckhead

        Very few Ram 1500′s are built in Mexico, the vast majority are built in Warren Michigan. BTW, do all the American cars and trucks sold in Mexico and Canada count as exports? Personally I’d rather support our NAFTA partners Canada and Mexico than Texas.

        http://www.allpar.com/news/index.php/2012/12/chrysler-production-up-14-3-in-november

    • 0 avatar
      84Cressida

      I’d rather drive a Tundra with no tires than a Ram. And the real world numbers for the Toyota and Dodge are very close, and let’s not even get started on the Toyota vs Dodge reliability.

      • 0 avatar
        mikey

        @ 84Cressida…Aw come on now, the Tundra comes with tires doesn’t it? I’ll bet they even throw in a spare.

        Too bad they couldn’t throw in an extra frame.

      • 0 avatar
        billfrombuckhead

        What real world numbers? Have a link? Plenty of high mileage Ram Hemis out there now. I go to auctions all the time. I’ve driven one with 360k miles. JD Power has the new ones really close, Ram most improved brand and now in the top 10 brands.

        The Ram rides far better than the Tundra, has a more modern V6, has a far better frame and now has transmission at least a generation ahead of Toyota’s. Let’s see which truck redesign gains the most marketshare?

  • avatar
    GarbageMotorsCo.

    Good job Toyota.


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