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Toyota’s April-June global vehicle output falls 9.8% short of target

TOKYO (Reuters) -Toyota Motor Corp produced 793,378 vehicles globally in June, it said on Thursday, slightly above a target it had cut twice and capping a quarter that saw the Japanese automaker slip 9.8% behind its production plan.

The world’s largest automaker by sales has seen its output hit in recent months by the global chips shortage and supply constraints from COVID-related lockdowns in China.

The June numbers represent a 4.6% decline from the same month last year and compared to a goal of 750,000 that had been lowered twice.

For its April-June first quarter, Toyota produced 2,120,577 vehicles, below its initial target of 2,350,000 for the period.

The shortfall is likely to raise fresh questions over whether Toyota can reach its record 9.7 million global vehicle production target for the year ending March 2023.

The recent strains have marked a reversal in fortune for the automaker, which was initially able to ride out the chip shortage thanks to a large stockpile but was later forced to scale back production as supply constraints and the COVID-19 lockdowns hit.

It first cut the June production target in late May, blaming the lockdown, and then again in mid-June, citing a COVID-19 outbreak at one supplier and a production equipment defect at another.

Still, there was some cause for optimism.

Toyota said its overseas production hit record levels for both June as well as the first six months of the calendar year.

An easing of lockdowns in Shanghai also helped production in China rise 42% for June.

Other Asian countries also saw production bouncing back from the pandemic.

Toyota has called the April-June quarter an “intentional cooling off” period to ease the burden on its suppliers by notifying them of changes to production plans as early as possible.

Nevertheless, production during the period did not go smoothly, Kazunari Kumakura, Toyota’s purchasing group chief, told reporters earlier this week.


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