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Japan automakers' global output rises 2.7% in October

This April 3, 2020 photo shows the logo of Toyota Motor Corp. at an entrance to its Tsusumi plant in Toyota, Aichi Prefecture, central Japan. (Kyodo)

TOKYO (Kyodo) -- Total global output by eight major Japanese automakers rose 2.7 percent from a year earlier to 2.44 million vehicles in October, continuing a gradual recovery from fallouts of the coronavirus pandemic, manufacturers' data showed Friday.

    The production increased for the second straight month following a 1.7 percent growth in September.

    Toyota Motor Corp. said its global production rose 9.0 percent to 845,107 units, the highest output for the month, following an 11.7 percent increase in the previous month and lifted by recovering sales in Japan and China.

    Domestic output rose 12.0 percent to 309,582 units, supported by the popularity of its revamped Harrier sport utility vehicle. Overseas production grew 7.4 percent to 535,525 units.

    Toyota's global sales in October climbed 8.3 percent to 847,713 units, also a record for the month, backed by solid sales of its luxury Lexus models in China, the world's largest auto market, and a rise in auto demand in the United States.

    "The pace of recovery (in production) has been faster than expected," a Toyota official said, adding that the automaker will closely watch a recent global resurgence of coronavirus infections.

    Suzuki Motor Corp. said its global production jumped 27.1 percent to a monthly record for October of 304,196 units, benefiting from improving sales in India where the company has a large market share.

    Honda Motor Co.'s global output grew 5.7 percent with production in China reaching the highest level for October, while Mazda Motor Corp. saw a 4.5 percent increase due to solid demand for its CX-5 sport utility vehicle.

    Subaru Corp. logged a 14.0 percent rise in global output, showing a strong increase from a year earlier when the company was forced to cut back production due to a typhoon.

    Nissan Motor Co.'s global production fell 15.1 percent due partly to a shift in its focus to profitability from sales volume.

    Mitsubishi Motors Corp., a member of a three-way alliance with Nissan and Renault SA, saw a 33.0 percent plunge in global production, while Daihatsu Motor Co., a minivehicle-making subsidiary of Toyota, saw a 3.6 percent drop.

    In October, global sales of the eight automakers rose 3.5 percent from a year earlier to 2.30 million units.

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