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Toyota Raises Profit Forecast For 2013

Good news from Toyota who has raised its profit forecast for 2013. The Japanese manufacturer has benefited from a weak yen and an impressive rise in sales in its key US market. The company has had a tough time following the Japanese Tsunami in 2011.

Good news from Toyota who has raised its profit forecast for 2013. The Japanese manufacturer has benefited from a weak yen and an impressive rise in sales in its key US market. The company has had a tough time following the Japanese Tsunami in 2011. The natural disaster disrupted supply chains and severely impacted sales and manufacture in Japan. More recently though, Toyota has shown a steep recovery and it regained its position as the world's leading car maker in January this year. Profits for the last quarter of 2012 were up 23% to 100bn yen compared with 81bn yen for the same quarter in 2011.

 
Looking forward, the company has raised its 2013 forecast from 780bn yen to 860bn yen (£5.9bn). Companies like Toyota who depend on exports are helped by a lower value on their home currency and the figures have been boosted by the yen dropping 15% against the dollar since November 2012. The company is bullish about sales for 2013 which they expect to rise further, boosted by strong performance in the US. After the difficult period following the tsunami, Toyota are now confident of the future with senior management commenting that they are 'finally on the road to sustainable growth'.
 
James Colon, vice president of product communications at Toyota Motor Sales (TMS) in the USA was particularly upbeat as the firm showed off the new Corolla concept car at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. He likened the new car's bold design and new technologies to a new found confidence at Toyota. The company will not have things all their own way though as they face stiff competition from Korean manufacturers Kia and Hyundai. The Korean giants made significant gains in China last year as that country banned Toyota imports due to a political dispute between Japan and China.
 
Toyota is still battling recall issues in the US however, where they are recalling 907,000 models, mostly Corollas, due to apparently faulty airbags. That is on top of a further 385,000 recalls on prestige Lexus IS cars which have been found to have defective wipers. Toyota initially said there had been no accidents relating to the air bag issue but have since indicated that there have been at least two accidents where it is thought the airbags were involved. Some airbags have been inflating inadvertently as the result of an electrical fault. There have been reports of some 18 minor abrasion injuries in the US due to the issue.

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