By on May 31, 2011

Hit by the March 11 earthquake and tsunami, exports of Japanese motor vehicles plummeted 67.8 percent from a year earlier in April.This according to data released today by the Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association. The quake hit all companies, although not equally hard … (Read More…)

By on May 30, 2011

The Development Bank of Japan is planning a bailout found for Japan’s hard-hit auto parts industry. The parts industry took the brunt of the March 11 earthquake and tsunami, and it is parts shortages that hold up a speedy recovery of Japan’s largest industry sector. According to the Yomiuri Shimbun, the DBJ plans to raise 50 billion yen for the fund. (Read More…)

By on May 25, 2011

Come June, Toyota “plans to bring domestic auto production back to as much as 90 percent of targets set before the March earthquake hit, thanks to faster-than-expected improvements in parts supplies,” The Nikkei [sub] writes today. At the annual results conference in Tokyo, Akio Toyoda had said Toyota Toyoda would be on its way back to normal beginning in June, with hopefully 70 percent of production reinstated in summer. This was already a two month improvement over previous plans. Two weeks later, the outlook seems to be even better. If The Nikkei heard correctly. (Read More…)

By on May 19, 2011

The ripple effects of the March 11 tsunami keep bouncing around the globe. The is good news and bad news. (Or bad news and good news, depending on the side you are on.) (Read More…)

By on May 3, 2011

 

Japan’s carmakers are slowly returning back to normal, hobbled only by unsure supply of parts and sometimes power. It will be slow going and full of surprises. One thing is for sure: The March 11 tsunami will have an ugly effect on carmakers’ books. Combined losses for the Japan’s carmakers and suppliers could “the biggest ever,” surpassing those during 2008 to 2009 financial crisis, Noriyuki Matsushima, an analyst in Tokyo at Citigroup Inc., told Bloomberg. (Read More…)

By on April 27, 2011

“This is the worst situation we’ve faced since the war,” a source close to Toyota told the Yomiuri Shimbun. The Japanese car industry is facing post-war-like shortages when it comes to auto parts. Toyota is short 150 parts positions, which can be anything from a bolt to a complete dashboard.

Dealerships are empty – of cars. Test drive cars do double duty as display vehicles. “We get a lot of customers coming in, but we don’t have cars to sell them,” a salesperson told the Tokyo paper. (Read More…)

By on April 21, 2011

Nissan’s Iwaki engine plant is back on line, as this video from Nissan’s in-house channel attests. The plant, located some 35 miles away from the stricken Fukushima power plant, was severely damaged by the quake and had been off-line ever since March 11. (Read More…)

By on April 20, 2011

 

During an intimate round table in Shanghai, usually well informed reporters were harping on the influence of radiation on Toyota sales. I expected the heads of communication of Toyota worldwide and Toyota China to blurt out: “Radiation? What impacts sales is the fact that we don’t have any cars to sell.” But they kept their cool in the face of a hot topic.

After a month-long quake-induced hiatus, Toyota restarted production in all Japanese factories on Monday. In the meantime, the shockwaves of the tsunami ripple through the supply lines. (Read More…)

By on April 16, 2011

Honda sources the vast majority of parts and materials needed for North American production in North America. “However, for global efficiency, a few critical parts continue to be supplied from Japan,” says Honda in a statement. Honda restarted production of component parts for North American plants Monday, April 4 at several Honda plants in Japan. However, those need their own parts and supplies. Therefore, Honda’s component production in Japan continues to run at approximately 50 percent of the original production plan.

This of course impacts North American production. (Read More…)

By on April 15, 2011

The March 11 tsunami is having long term effects on Japanese car production. Toyota, the world’s and by far Japan’s largest car company, is severely impacted. Toyota just announced that vehicle production from May 10 to June 3 will proceed at approximately 50 percent of normal. (Read More…)

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