• Nov 7, 2007
Whenever we talk about GM's performance in the global market, people invariably want to hear about how well Toyota is doing in the same arena. The Japanese automaker has been nipping at the General's heels in terms of the number of units each automaker has sold globally so far this year. Earlier in the year, Toyota actually surpassed GM in global sales, but the American auto giant has since regained the lead in year-to-date global sales and keeps it through Q3.
On a global scale, Toyota performed quite well in its own fiscal second quarter, which is the same period as the calendar year third quarter for most companies. During this period, Toyota earned its second highest ever operating profit of $5.01 billion, but its North American figures were hurt by a few factors, chief among them being incentives required to increase sales of its Tundra full-size pickup. Higher raw material costs and, of course, the subprime market meltdown are also contributing factors.

Regardless, Toyota isn't budging on how many vehicles it expects to sell worldwide during its fiscal year that ends March 31, 2008. In fact, it's raised its target to 8.93 million units, up some 40,000 units from previous estimates. Seems that despite recent bumps in the road concerning quality concerns over the car and trucks it sells in the U.S., Toyota's juggernaut keeps on steaming ahead.

[Source: Automotive News, sub. req'd]


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  • 24 Comments
      • 7 Years Ago
      You people still don't get the math.

      Toyota (and Honda, Hyundai, etc. together) has brought many fewer jobs than have been lost by any single one of the American companies (let alone their suppliers and dealership employees). That means less American workers to support our local economies, that also means less research and developement being done by American engineers and scientists.

      Toyota's success is costly to the American economy. Sorry if that offends you but it's a fact.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Willem,

        While cost will be an initiative to have several suppliers on site, this is not an abnomality for any manufacturer. That being the case, every domestic plant that closes costs supplier jobs as well.

        While your $ per hour may be equal to that of the domestic plant workers, how's your pension.... Oh yeah, you don't get that do you?

        What's your benefits package look like compared to Ford/GM/Chysler employees?

        How many of your co-workers are temporary? Do the janitors make the same money as the assemblers (not that they should)?

        When Toyota market share declines, do you get to look for another job if your shift is cancelled and if you do how long do you get?

        Do you or your temporary co-workers get anything if your shifts are reduced?

        These are just a few things that the domestic manufacturers do for their employees that other companies don't. They keep a temporary workforce that can be lost quickly if necessary and people like you who are full time are not protected in any way from plant closings or shift cuts.
        • 7 Years Ago
        And how many jobs lost because your own manufacturers ship production north and south of your borders and into Eastern Europe and China because?
      • 7 Years Ago
      yeah nice job scapegoating the tundra and the american market in general. it has made them rich and they can chastise it still.

      what do you expect though. I can't wait for the tides to turn in a couple years. Hopfully the dollar softness kicks them in the ass next year on their recort exporting from japan.

      looks great on them.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Being an American what can you say except I wish them the worst.
        • 7 Years Ago
        "As an American I find your comment to be extremely unpatriotic. If you don't like your fellow Americans (the mechanic who changes the oil on a Camry, the truck driver who delivers the parts to dealers, the assembly line workers who put tightens the lug nuts, etc. etc.) who work hard to support their families and support our economy and community ....well then you can get out you traitor."


        LMAO, so if you don't like ambulance chancing lawyers and say so then you are unpatriotic? If you are a priest and don't support or agree with adult movie stars then you are unpatriotic.

        I got the logic. REAL GOOD as it may seem to you that is basically propaganda on your part to suggest that against Toyota is unpatriotic.

        The terrorist create jobs too (in military, homeland security, law enforcement, etc.) is it unpatriotic to say anything against them too?

        • 7 Years Ago
        As an American, it bothers me that someone will use being American as a reason for being a Xenophobe.

        Please America is too honorable and decent to used as a shield for Xenophobic remarks...That is just not acceptable.
        • 7 Years Ago
        @Jonathan: Find me a chinese man in a Buick (in China, mind you.) Nice try.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Being an American means understanding that the country is quite different from what it was 50 years ago. Companies like toyota are here to stay and they are contributing to the American Economy.

        People in China are not wishing GM the worst. Infact they are buying more Buicks than Americans.

        You should try to appreciate that!
      Gina
      • 7 Years Ago
      Forget about classic cars. I just want to see drain plugs in differentials and transmissions. Toyota has been putting them in all their vehicles since the 70's. It is now 2008 model year, and I'm still not seeing it in American brands (except in some American/Foreign cars such as Pontiac Vibe, which is a Toyota Matrix). I have had to pay mechanics $100 to add that feature in all of my American brand cars.
        • 7 Years Ago
        @Gina
        Gina, please think about what you said. In the first place, Most of Toyota's line up is with FWD. They don't have differentials.
        The reason MOST cars from Bentley all the way down to the lowest of cars, Kia, don't have drain plugs in their transaxles (in girl talk; transmissions) is because they want you to change the filter and clean the shavings from the bottom of the pan. No matter what you drive, all cars experience aluminum and steel particles at the bottom. If you just drain the fluid, well use your imagination.
        So just popping open a drain plug and replacing the fluid on a transaxle, transmission, and a differential is your or Toyoda's idea of servicing, well once again, Toyoda is not the car for me and leave your maintenaince to a pro.
        Now you've got me wondering if perhaps this is the reason so many Toyoda's transaxle's fail.
        • 7 Years Ago
        @Gina
        David is apparently incapable of understanding that people use the drain plug to drain the fluid first, then drop the transmission afterwards to clean off the pan and drain what's left.

        Apparently not being doused with hot transmission fluid is not a useful feature in his mind.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Tony thats funny, xenophobic, hardly, my employer for the last 20 years isn't American who by the way can tell you a great deal about foreign lands and the companies that operate there, get your head out of the dictionary and realize Toyota has a tilted playing field, in there favor, from American car companies, I mean why does Japan protect its markets to American companies....

      Jonathan I don't know why you brought up China, but anyway yes the economy is very diverse from 50 years ago, I can't verify because I wasn't here, but I don't appreciate a company that has raped this country by unfair trade practices at the expense of American jobs, these vehicles are only put together here, all the money still returns to Japan....

      Josh, you are the crap that people step in, unpatriotic?, your just stupid, Toyota isn't an AMERICAN COMPANY, I mean you think GM or Ford workers don't support the economy and community?

      Besides have you ever heard of a Classic Toyota?
        • 7 Years Ago
        Uhh yeah J actually I have, a Toyota Crown is a good example of a classic car, but the nameplate's actually still around in Japan, there's also the Yotohachi sports coupe, and you could even make the argument that the AE86 is a "classic" car.

        Just because it ain't a muscle car or doesn't have fins doesn't mean it can't be classic, nor does it have to be a car that YOU personally have heard of.. "J".
      • 7 Years Ago
      In other words, market projections for Tundra sales were WAY off their expectations. And will be again until after the assembly problems (dash, transmission, tailgate, ...) are corrected (likely 2008 2nd qtr). Still Toyota had a profit, but GM has a bigger write-off (and in more politicians pockets than Toyota).

      • 7 Years Ago
      I forgot all about this thread...
      1. I'd say 90% full time/not temporary would be a good guess.
      2. Full benefits, everything you could need/want
      3. I actually do get a pension, but thanks for mentioning that.
      4. i don't know about the janitors, they're contracted to an outside company, but all lineworkers and conveyance make the same amount of $, only mtce makes more...
      5. since 1950, Toyota hasn't had to cancel a shift. rather than have a 3rd production shift, they give mandatory overtime... i.e... more money for everyone else.
      I think that pretty much sums up your concerns about working at Toyota...

      As for the magnetic drain plug on the transmission, all SUNFIREs and CAVALIERs had them...
      (I may work at Toyota, i don't drive one. I just get fed up with stupid union employees thinking that they are better than non-unionized places... UNIONS are the DEVIL.)
      • 7 Years Ago
      "Tundra incentives take their toll"

      What toll? $5.01 billion dollars in operating profit? seriously, what toll?

      were you expecting $100 billion Operating profit? Geez!!

      $38 billion write down? Yikes thats a toll.
        • 7 Years Ago
        I know, these jokers are here claiming that GM's loss wasn't a real loss.

        Well, while they didn't just actually burn $40 billion in dollar bills, the truth is that they won't be able to save $38 billion in taxes.

        I don't know what kinda idiots don't think not being able to save $38 billion in taxes isn't a big deal. Essentially, the entirety of their tax credits due to losses from previous years has been wiped out as being too unrealistic to use.

        On top of which, they really DID lose regular old money, since the tax write-off asset loss was only 38 billion but they lost almost 40 billion. In fact, they lost an ADDITIONAL 1.6 billion dollars.

        This is coming from a (thankfully) former GM stockholder. I have nothing against GM, but only a completely delusional idiot would think that it's not a big deal that GM lost $40 billion.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Thank You Mike, finally...


      Takeo and D, ya'll are funny, Toyota Crown a classic car, Oh ok maybe in Iran or somewhere but not here, good laugh though.
        • 7 Years Ago
        I don't know if you realize this but a lot of Toyota vehicles have a lot of engineering you don't notice from a mere test drive.

        For example, since at least 2002 the Camry has had a transmission with magnets in the bottom drain pan. Pretty simple sounding, but most of the wear particles from the transmission happen to be metal...which will stick to the magnets instead of being recycled into the transmission with the fluid.
        And even back in '02 on a cheapo midsize, the cruise control was already linked into the electronic throttle control system so that when you set 55mph the car would vary power to stay at 55mph (versus just revving the engine at a particular rpm). The Altima also go this in '02 but this wasn't implemented until later in other competitors (03 for the accord, 04 for the malibu).
        Not particularly impressive by itself, but it adds to the super-easy to drive long-distance capabilities of the Camry.

        Oh, and that cheap looking stock sound system found on the base Camry? It actually has a pretty decent separate stock amp near the glove box. Perhaps more importantly, the 2 rear door woofers are also ported through the car door to boost the bass, so that the stock Camry LE without a sub can probably put out more bass than an Audi A4 even with a sub (or I guess a Passat since they're the same car). No it's not better than some highly upgraded soundsystem, but it's not going to get your windows smashed in either. And heck, Toyota even decided to keep the cassette tape player. Sounds stupid, but back in '02 no manufacturer had an aux input on the headunit. Of course, any Camry owner could just buy a $10 cassette adapter and plug in their ipods and have tons of music to listen to on those long drives, while everyone else was stuck with staticy FM transmitters that would inevitably get interference as you drove through different areas where there would inevitably be a station on a similar frequency. If you don't believe me go sit in a 2002 Camry then go sit in any other 2002 model year competitor and listen to the stock sound systems on the CD of your choice. I've heard the stock sound systems on just about every last competing car, and even the stock systems on cars that aren't competitors, and the Camry is near the top of the pack (only bested by cars that cost a LOT more).

        And even the projection headlamps actually throw the halogen lights a pretty good distance, enough distance so that you can slow down in time. Not the case with a LOT of other cars (even ones with HIDs, a lot of HIDs projection designs just throw the light in a wider arc, so they don't neccessarily project light far enough). There was a chart in Consumer Reports (and no the Camry wasn't #1 so don't whine, a Mazda Protege5 was the winner), and a lot of cars would have resulted in hitting a pedestrian or a deer at night just because you couldn't see them in time.

        My point is that even though you may not think a Toyota can be a classic, the Camry is itself a classic. No, it's not a classic sports car, but that's just the thing, it doesn't claim to be. The Camry is a classic highway driver that people can actually afford. You can put your cassette adapter in (or heck even a cassette if you're in the mood), set the cruise control, adjust the power driver's seat (yes you could delete this option but 95% of even base camrys had this option) to something comfortable and cruise the miles away.

        Oh, that reminds me. The 2002-2006 Camry has one of the lowest drag coefficients of any car out there at 0.28. That's the same as a Porsche 997. All of the cars that have a better drag coefficient are either hybrids tuned for mileage (including the Camry hybrid actually), or are in different price classes (Mercedes S class, C-class, Infiniti G35). Not easy for a cheapo econobox to pull off a 0.28 c/d in 2002, but again, it just adds to the highway cruising classicality of the car. Which is probably why in this huge country filled with highways and long commutes the Camry is the #1 car for regular people with regular budgets. No it can't tow 5 tons, or go 0-60 under 5, but that's not why it's a classic.

        P.S. Toyota tends to play things safe, like when they phased in Dex-Cool they rated it first as a 2-year/30,000 mile radiator fluid to avoid the kinda problems GM had with Dex-Cool. They eventually did release a supposedly new version that goes 5-years/100,000, but in reality the "2 year/30K" stuff probably can go 5 years/100K anyway (if you read the Haynes manual it just tells you to do 5 years 100K for the 02's). Even at 5 years/100K Toyota is playing it safe compared to the 150K everyone else is claming. Seems like a pretty sound strategy even if you can't claim crazy service intervals (personally I'm against some of the newer Toyota's having supposedly lifetime transmission fluids...those magnets are good but I'd still rather clean
        • 7 Years Ago
        Tekdemon,
        "For example, since at least 2002 the Camry has had a transmission with magnets in the bottom drain pan."
        Old technnology. Been around for many years on most other cars. I guess it takes that long for Toyo to catch
        up.
        "And even back in '02 on a cheapo midsize, the cruise control was already linked into the electronic throttle control system so that when you set 55mph the car would vary power to stay at 55mph"
        You're kidding, right? My fathers 1978 AMC Concord even did that. Again, old technology.
        And the part about the stereo, well, if you take into consideration that the Camry's average customer is probably over 40, I don't think they give a rats behind about the base or where it's located. Oh, we had an oo' and o2 sebring conv. and both had cassette and cd players as well as my 02 and 06 caddy sts's.
        The headlights, I'm not going to touch that one.
        And the drag efficiency nonsense? At the cost of being one of the most boring looking cars since the Yugo, well maybe it means something to you.
        Now for the classic issue. The word Camry (toyota for that matter) and classic do not belong in the same paragraph let alone the same sentence. The Camry is a reliable car that gets you from point A to point B period. All other cars do exactly the same, some using more gas, some using less. Check the definition of "Classic Car" and guess what? The name Camry does'nt appear anywhere. As for a car that you can just drive the miles away, seems to me with all the sludge and tranny failures of late it sure would'nt be my choice.
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