Because of the unexpected strong demand so far this year at the key markets, Toyota Motor Corp. has raised its global production target for 2012 by about 300,000 vehicles to almost 9 million, according to a Nikkei business daily report. Initially, Toyota had hoped to make a record 8.65 million vehicles under the Toyota and Lexus brands in 2012, a 24% increase from 2011. The Nikkei said that this modified plan anticipates a 30% climb this year. It added that overseas sales are likely to exceed estimates in the second half too. The report also revealed that government subsidies aided in boosting the sales of fuel-efficient vehicles in Japan, stimulating orders for models like the new Aqua hybrid. The Nikkei said that auto sales had surged by 83% in the first half of the year to 920,000 units. Toyota had said that its sales in the U.S. had increased by 26% in July compared with the same month last year. From January to July, Toyota’s U.S. sales had increased by 28% to 1.2 million light vehicles. Hybrid sales had increased overseas, driven by the increase in oil prices. In addition, Toyota will raise its production target next year to around 9.1 million units from 8.98 million currently. This increase will mainly come from the emerging markets, particularly Brazil and Indonesia.