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post #1 of 1 (permalink) Old 06-18-2008, 11:39 PM Thread Starter
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Toyota trims truck production amid sales decline

From Automotive News:

Toyota trims truck production amid sales decline

Automotive News
June 18, 2008 - 4:00 pm ET


Automotive News
June 18, 2008 - 4:00 pm ET
DETROIT (Reuters) -- Toyota Motor Corp. is cutting U.S. production of its full-size pickup trucks further this year as record gasoline prices have depressed sales of trucks and SUVs, the automaker said on Wednesday.

The production cut at Toyota's two U.S. truck plants is the second this year. The automaker trimmed production of its Tundra pickup truck and the Sequoia SUV in March in the face of a steep drop in demand for large vehicles.

Now No.2 in U.S. vehicle sales, Toyota will stop making the Tundra at its San Antonio, Texas, plant for 14 days between now and the end of October, Toyota spokesman Mike Goss said.

Toyota's Princeton, Ind., plant, which makes the Tundra and the Sequoia SUV, will be shut down for six days between now and the end of August, and more days of production cuts were likely in September and October, Goss said.

Toyota will also slow the production rate at the plants.
Workers on each shift may also work only seven hours instead of eight, spending one hour on training, Goss said.

The company has the capacity to produce about 300,000 Tundras at the two plants. It sold 196,555 vehicles in 2007, the truck's first year on the market.
Goss did not say how much production would be reduced by the latest cut.
Toyota's U.S. sales fell about 5 percent in the first five months of 2008 from a year earlier, as a 16 percent drop in truck sales outweighed increased demand for its smaller, fuel-efficient cars and crossovers.

Toyota sold 12,144 Tundras in May, down 34 percent from last year.
Earlier this month, it gave up its target of a 1 percent gain in U.S. sales this year, saying its U.S. sales were likely to decline this year due to lowered expectations for pickup truck sales.

Gas prices at $4 per barrel, combined with a weak U.S. economy and tight credit markets, are expected to push lower U.S. light vehicle sales to near or below 15 million units this year, their lowest level since 1994, analysts and industry executives have forecast.
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