Toyota U.S. sales dropped 18 percent in September 2011

Article by Christian Andrei, on October 4, 2011

Toyota Motor Corp.’s U.S. sales for September dropped by 18% but the company is confident that there will be gains in October as dealer inventories continue to recover. Toyota still feels the impact of the March 11 earthquake and faces vehicle shortages. Toyota sold 121,451 vehicles in the U.S. in September.

This includes sales of Toyota, Lexus and Scion brands. This is a drop from 147,162 vehicles in September last year. From January to September 2011, Toyota has sold almost 1.2 million vehicles in the U.S., a 9% decrease from the same period in 2010. At the end of September, Toyota’s U.S. dealer inventories stayed below normal levels.

It has been nearly a month since Toyota said that its assembly plants in North America had gotten back to having a normal vehicle output. In a recent conference call, Bob Carter, group vice president at Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc., said that the automaker had about 120,000 vehicles on dealer lots, standing for a 30-day supply.

Carter anticipates dealer inventories to still increase in the upcoming weeks and months. Carter also said that the levels are “a little lighter” but the company is set to have “a terrific number of wholesales” that will arrive at dealers this month. He added that it will take some time before dealer inventories return to normal; however, its flow of new products arriving is “above” what could be expected.

Toyota Division sales grew by 19% to 102,618 vehicles while Lexus fell by 12% to 14,995 vehicles. Scion recorded an 8% increase to 3,838 units.

The Toyota Avalon has received a re-styling from Calty for the 2011 model year, allowing it to don a more elegant yet more imposing presence on the road. Its much wider stance is further highlighted by the wider grille flanked by new projector headlamps while its broad unflustered front hood visually lowers the car’s center of gravity. Its new projector headlamps feature multi-reflector halogen high beams and halogen or HID low beams, and employ a hallmark, night-time appearance.

The restyling resulted to front fog lamps being integrated into a trapezoidal front bumper, thereby allowing for a wider angle of illumination. For the 2011 model year, the new Avalon features chrome trim, glare-resistant outer mirrors with integrated turn signals as well as redesigned rocker panels. Completing the side profile of the new Avalon are new mirror-finish 10-spoke 17-inch wheels on the Limited grade.

On the other hand, the rear of the new Avalon is marked by a single Avalon logo placed just above the license plate as well as dual-exhaust pipes integrated into the trapezoidal shape of the lower bumper. In addition, the taillights of the Avalon – now reshaped to further reduce turbulence at the rear for a lower coefficient of drag – integrate stop, turn and side marker lighting functions. To give the Avalon a modern look on the rear, the car is provided with distinct LED light pipes with dark aluminized sides as well as clear and red lenses.

Of course, the restyling of the new Avalon also extends to the interior, which is still as roomy, as elegant and as convenient. This is thanks to the use of coordinated colors, rich wood-grain materials, and carefully integrated amenities as well as comfortable seating.

The Limited version features standard leather-trimmed front seats and seatbacks with ventilation systems as well as an enlarged perforation area. In addition, the seats are provided with thicker stitching for a more elegant emphasis.

Also specified as standard on the new Avalon are active front headrests. Meanwhile, the layout of the reclining rear seats allows them to comfortably seat three passengers and provide them with ample legroom. Likewise, Calty re-shaped and enlarged the rear headrests to allow for better support and included a center armrest that could be flipped down for storage when the middle seat is not being use.

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