Tag Archives: Toyota

Toyota Not Worried About Competition from Tesla

Toyota executives answered questions about their plans for the development of the company to better compete in the electric vehicle market, with a special concern aimed at Tesla Motors.

President Akio Toyoda responded to Tesla’s valuation, set at about $400 billion, was unrealistically high; larger than all of Japan’s 7 car makers put together.

In addition, Toyoda said that his company can learn something from Tesla’s success with investors. He said Tesla’s business model could teach Toyota a great deal, especially about revenue for electric vehicles, regulatory credits, software, and renewable energy products.

But not everything was praise for the upstart American company.

Toyoda used the example of a restaurant to compare Tesla to Toyota. Whereas Tesla is like a restaurant that is still trying to sell its recipes, Toyota is a restaurant that is already attracting and serving many loyal customers.

“I am hesitant to say this — Tesla’s business, if you want to use the analogy, is like that of a kitchen and a chef,” Toyoda said.

“They have not created a real business in the real world yet. They are trying to trade recipes. The chef is saying ‘Our recipe is going to become the standard of the world in the future!’ At Toyota, we have a real kitchen and a real chef too and are creating the dishes already. There are customers, who are very picky about what they like to eat, sitting in front of us, and eating our dishes already.”

Toyoda told his investors that his company manufactures and sells many more and a broader variety of cars than Tesla, the number is about 100 million cars on the world’s roads. The outlook for 2021 is for Toyota to sell about 7.5 million vehicles. Compare that to Tesla’s forecast to sell about half a million electric vehicles in 2020.

Toyota announced a joint venture last year with one of Tesla’s fiercest competitors, former battery producer and now electric car producer BYD China. Despite profit decline last quarter, Toyota has registered a 3% higher sales recovery and the general auto industry, which is still recovering from depressed sales due to the pandemic in China during the first six months of 2020.

GM Say Tariffs are Bad for Business and Bad for People

General Motors explained to the US Commerce Department that broad tariffs such as the

Fábrica de General Motors en Rosario. Photo courtesy Baglieto.

kind the Trump administration is threatening to impose, could “lead to a smaller GM, a reduced presence at home and abroad for this iconic American Company, and risk is less-not more- U.S. jobs.” GM is the country’s largest automaker.

Back in May the Trump administration started an investigation to see if imported vehicles are a threat to U.S. national security. President Trump as many times stated that he would be happy to place a 20 percent import tariff on vehicles.

GM produces some of its cars overseas now for the U.S. market, including in Canada and Mexico. GM warned that tariffs could dampen sales and raise prices. Even if the company decided not to pass on their higher costs to consumers, this “could still lead to less investment, fewer jobs and lower wages for our employees. The carry-on effect of less investment and a smaller workforce could delay breakthrough technologies,” GM said.

The company employees about 110,000 people throughout the United States in 47 manufacturing plants. It purchases tens of billions of dollars’ worth of car parts from US suppliers annually. They have invested more than $22 billion in US manufacturing infrastructure since 2009.

The overbroad and steep application of import tariffs on our trading partners risks isolating U.S. businesses like GM from the global market that helps to preserve and grow our strength here at home,” GM said.

Also filing comments in opposition to the Tariffs was Toyota Motor Corp. They said that tariffs would, “threaten U.S. manufacturing, jobs, exports, and economic prosperity.”

GMC Going Head to Head with Toyoto with New Midsize Truck

Offering consumers similar towing power to their competitors’ large-size trucks, GMC released their latest midsize truck as an attractive alternative.

Truck buyers will see the 2015 Canyon go on sale in the third quarter of 2014 together with

GMC's New Midsize Truck, the Canyon 2015
GMC’s New Midsize Truck, the Canyon 2015

a Chevrolet variety called the Colorado. Both models will have a maximum towing power of 6,700 pounds (3,039 kilograms), the highest in its class. General Motors is unveiling their new trucks one day before the North American International Auto Show which is opening on Monday, January 13, in Detroit.

The Canyon enlarges the number of GM truck choices to be the largest number of pickups by any other US-based company. GM already has a heavy-duty truck on their line-up; the new models are meant to compete with Toyota’s Tacoma, a large truck. GM has not yet released the price of their new models, but in general full-size trucks are priced about 46% higher than their midsize counterparts.

“Not everyone needs full-size capability, but they also deserve strength and true truck attributes that come in larger models,” Tony DiSalle, vice president of GMC marketing, said. “The Canyon will offer all the capability with confidence and GMC’s signature refinement that complements active lifestyles.”

Chrysler Introducing All-New Midsize Car

New Car Coming to Take Avenger's Place in the Midsize Auto Market
New Car Coming to Take Avenger’s Place in the Midsize Auto Market

Come early next year Chrysler plans on unveiling a completely redesigned midsize car to replace its present cars in that niche, the Chrysler 200 and Dodge Avenger. The new model is sorely needed if Chrysler wishes to be competitive in the most popular part of the US car market.

Company executives announced on Tuesday that the cars will be built in the same factory where the Avenger and 200 are built now, in Sterling Heights, Michigan, just north of Detroit.

The two models were first launched in 2006, with one update three years ago. Today they have the distinction of being the oldest cars in the midsize market. They are priced far below just about all their competitors, but they are also noisier, have less pleasant rides and worst of all, have poorer gas mileage than the more recently released competition, such as the Toyota Camry and Honda Accord.

The midsize auto market is a fiercely competitive niche, responsible for the largest percentage of car sales in the country and Chrysler’s choices are not doing well.

Sales for the Avenger and the 200 reached 136,000 as of June, which is higher than last year’s sales, but still not enough to make the cut. Compare that figure to Toyota’s sale of close to 208,000 Camry’s, and Honda’s sale of 187,000 Accords, and you can see why Chrysler feels a need to change.

The new model will most certainly be built utilizing component parts designed together with the Italian car maker Fiat SpA, the majority owner of Chrysler.

Americans Moving To Compact Cars

Americans are beginning to wake up to the new financial reality and starting to adjust their lifestyles. We can see this in the new American automotive trend towards compact cars. In results from consumer surveys, more people are planning to buy compacts within the next 6 months. General Motors, Hyundai, Toyota, and Ford are all adding overtime shifts to their compact car productions lines.

Scott Fink, the president of the New Port Richey Hyundai dealership near Tampa Florida said, “As the Elantras come in, 9 out of 10 of them are pre-sold.” According to Fink, customers who are buying compact cars are trying to lower their debts and to improve their cash flow.

The price of a new compact starts at $16,500 and they can get between 30-40 miles per gallon. The best selling cars are the Chevrolet Cruze, the Toyota Corolla and the Hyundai Elantra.

Genral Motors Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) Joel Ewanick said that “the buyers are completely different than the ones we have seen before.” They are more interested in economy. GM has sold 147,620 compacts from January to the end of July. Toyota has sold 154,324 Corolla’s in the same 7 months.

In May, Chevrolet four cylinder cars including Malibu, Equinox and Cruze comprised over half (fifty one percent) of all Chevrolet retail sales.  This is a raise of thirty six percent over last year’s May compact car retail sales.

The recession is here to stay for at least a few years and money-wise people are starting to be more conservative with their budgets, in order to keep solvent in these financially tough times.