Toyota Sales Rebounding In China, Co Exec Whispers


Toyota (TM) sales are making a comeback after Chinese opted out of buying vehicles from the leading Japanese automaker over a political imbroglio revolving around a small, oil rich island chain.

“Sales rebounded faster than we had expected,” an unnamed Toyota executive was quoted as saying in newswire articles published in the Shanghai Daily News on Monday.  Toyota is releasing sales data later in the day on Monday, and so the executive was not allowed to be quoted in the press.  However, reporters there manged to get some numbers out of Toyota.  Sales in China rose to “nearly” 90,000 vehicles in December, down from the 108,000 vehicles Toyota was selling in December 2011.

Toyota’s December sales fall followed a decline of 22 percent in November, 44 percent in October, and almost 50 percent in September. But the unsourced Toyota executive said that showroom traffic was improving in mainland China after the locals protested Japan’s take over of the Diaoyu Islands in the East China Sea.  Japan’s says the islands belong to them. China says otherwise. The dispute had enough Chinese snubbing their noses at Toyota to make a serious dent in auto sales.

Shares of Toyota are up over 42 percent in the last 12 months on the NYSE.

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