Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing North America Inc., Erlanger, Ky., announced May 11 that it will boost vehicle production beginning in June rather than July or August as had been anticipated following the March 11 earthquake and tsunami in Japan. Overall North American production will reach approximately 70% of normal levels, up from about 30% in May. Overall, the automaker’s production was at about 50% by mid-May.
Models returning to 100% production in June are Avalon, Camry, Corolla, Highlander, Matrix, Sequoia, Sienna and Venza.
The improvement in parts availability from Japan is the result of countermeasure activities implemented by affected suppliers. Toyota will continue to evaluate production model-by-model on a monthly basis, with a goal to return to fully normalized production by late this year.
Toyota also had a reported plunge of more than 75% in profit for the first quarter. The Japanese automaker, however, managed to double its earnings before the natural disasters struck the eastern coast of the country, and as it began to recover from its massive recalls.