Toyota Motor Corp. is cooperating with components manufacturers to restore inventories of 30 types of parts that are still feeling the impact of the Japan earthquake last March.
After the disaster, 659 plants that mostly belong to second- and lower-tier suppliers were damaged, Senior Managing Director Yasumori Ihara disclosed during Toyota's annual shareholder meeting in Japan. He added that the company has a team of 150 investigators who are working to lessen the components shortage.
He also disclosed that Toyota has lowered the number of critical components in short supply, mostly rubber materials and semiconductor, from 500 at the end of March.
Last week, Toyota mentioned that it foresees profit to drop 31 percent to 280 billion yen ($3.5 billion) this fiscal year because damage to suppliers limits vehicle production and the strong yen erodes earnings from exports.
With limited output, Toyota may be outperformed by General Motors Co. in overall sales for this 2011.
Worldwide car sales may decrease to 7.24 million this fiscal year from 7.308 million last year, the company disclosed last June 10. Operations will return to normal at its North American factories in September, Bob Carter, the group vice president for U.S. sales, stated last Thursday.
Moreover, the Nikkei newspaper reported this week that normal levels for worldwide output may be restored this October. The vehicle manufacturer's plants are running at 70 percent of planned levels this month, compared to the 50 percent in April and May.