Toyota's January Numbers: Down, Down

Bertel Schmitt
by Bertel Schmitt

Toyota Motor Corporation released global production, domestic sales and export results for January. Two words: Not good. While Toyota’s global peers can boast of surprising numbers for January, TMC’s worldwide production dropped by 3.9 percent across Toyota, Daihatsu and Hino. The Toyota brand has even less to show: Minus 4.7 percent. And this while the competition is busy dethroning the leader of the pack.

Volkswagen, who has declared Toyota their enemy #1, delivered 644,200 units globally in January, up 19.6 percent. This is getting awfully close to the 688,580 units Toyota produced in January. Hyundai and Kia together delivered 489,209 units worldwide in January, with Hyundai up 14.2 percent and Kia up 19.3 percent.

General Motors does not report monthly global numbers (they should), but news from their largest markets China and U.S.A. were exceptional. GM finished 2010 only 167,582 units behind top ranking Toyota. It is a good guess that GM out-produced and out-sold Toyota globally in January.

Unit = one vehicle; figures in ( ) show year-on-year percentage change ToyotaDaihatsuHinoTotalPRODUCTION IN JAPAN*1 Passenger cars210,619(-14.8)39,725(-11.9)–—250,344(-14.4) Trucks & buses23,426(8.5)8,715(1.7)8,355(26.9)40,496(10.2)Total234,045(-13.0)48,440(-9.7)8,355(26.9)290,840(-11.6)SALES IN JAPAN*2 Passenger cars78,649(-30.7)34,118(-6.6)–—112,767(-24.8) Trucks & buses8,750(16.1)8,197(-4.6)2,032(6.4)18,979(5.2)Total87,399(-27.8)42,315(-6.2)2,032(6.4)131,746(-21.6)EXPORTS Passenger cars113,585(-4.5)1,996(-31.2)–—115,581(-5.1) Trucks & buses12,558(4.3)—(-100.0)5,096(16.6)17,654(3.7)Total126,143(-3.7)1,996(-43.2)5,096(16.6)133,235(-4.0)OVERSEAS
PRODUCTION613,831(-4.7)65,466(0.4)9,283(24.7)688,580(-3.9)*1Includes kits for overseas assembly; *2includes overseas production; *3excludes kits from Japan

What is Toyota’s problem? It’s not the one that pops into mind. Toyota’s problem is that they are in the wrong markets. Toyota, Daihatsu and Hino hold a domineering 43.1 percent share of the Japanese domestic market. Japanese domestic new car sales (excluding minivehicles) were down 21.5 percent in January, dragging down Toyota’s sales. On top of this, TMC lost 2.7 percent of this shrinking market. In the U.S., Toyota kept pace with the market, while GM and Hyundai gained market share. In the emerging markets, which drive the growth of Toyota’s peers, the Japanese juggernaut has problems keeping up, a fact that had been castigated by The Nikkei a few days ago.

Perversely, Toyota’s possible salvation is in the streets of North Africa and the Middle East. The riots there drove prices at the pump well above $3. Analysts talk about $5 gas. GM’s and Ford’s good numbers were delivered by trucks and SUVs. The stock market is already betting that this party may be over. Toyota always does well when gas prices go up. But so do Volkswagen and Hyundai.

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4 of 6 comments
  • Invisible Invisible on Feb 25, 2011

    Autospies couldn't wait to steal yet another article from you I C. That troll 009 jumped all over this since is shows a negative for Toyota. Next, 009 will be posting those horrific pics of the family killed in the Lexus where the dealership installed the incorrect floormats and making some vile and inappropriate correlation. So Toyota is sitting on a wave of new products that are the big sellers. Camry, lots of new Lexus models. I predict a quiet introduction of these new models followed by a big jump in sales.

    • Bd2 Bd2 on Feb 25, 2011

      A bit amusing that invisible is calling out another poster for trolling, amusing indeed.

  • MrBostn MrBostn on Feb 25, 2011

    Maybe this will translate into some deep discounting...

    • Bd2 Bd2 on Feb 25, 2011

      If you haven't noticed, Toyota has already been doing that. Both higher manufacturer incentives and bigger dealer discounting. That, along w/ increased fleet sales, is what allowed Toyota to basically maintain marketshare last year.

  • Redapple2 I m OK with State Inspections, OF 7 , 8 OR HOWEVER OLD CARS. I get a new car every 3-5 years. Well, that aint right. When I lived in NY, it would really fry my butt to be compelled to have my new car inspected. Add in 9% sales tax ( after i ve already paid ~50% on the money when I made it - so- i had to make $2 to have $1 in my pocket- So, net it back upward? > it s a 18% tax.) Add in massive property tax, state income tax. Brutal winters. I voted with my feet. Off topic a little. Sorry.
  • Adamscotthi Thanks a lot for article!
  • MaintenanceCosts This class of car competes hard with Chargers/Challengers and modded diesel pickups for the douchey-driving crown.
  • 28-Cars-Later Corey - I think I am going to issue a fatwa demanding a cool kids car meetup in July somewhere in the Ohio region.
  • Master Baiter Might as well light 50 $100 bills on fire.