Akio Toyoda, the President of Toyota Motor Corp. and the grandson of its founder, visited parts in Japan that were ravaged by the earthquake. On Monday and Tuesday, Toyoda went to Miyagi prefecture, near the epicenter of the quake. Toyota had been preparing this area to be its domestic center for its production of small cars.
To date, most of Toyota’s 18 Japanese assembly plants are still closed. Last Monday, Toyota began limited production of the Toyota Prius and Lexus HS250h and Lexus CT 200h hybrids; however, these lines will be halted on Wednesday.
Toyota is currently monitoring the supply of 500 parts that are currently lacking, says Autonews. Toyoda went to the Central Motors Co. assembly plant in Ohira, which just opened last January. This facility, which produces the Yaris sedan for export to the U.S., suffered slight damage to the building and machinery.
He also went to a local plant operated by supplier Toyota Boshoku and to a parts plant managed by affiliate Toyota Tohoku. He checked out four dealerships and the shipping port of Sendai city, where the Yaris is loaded.
In a statement, Toyoda said that the earthquake damaged one of its production bases, and its dealers, suppliers and other partners are included in those that were directly hit.