If there was ever any doubt that the auto industry is in a very rough patch, today's news from Toyota should erase any doubt. A Japanese newspaper is reporting that the automotive juggernaut has unofficially revised its 2008 sales forecast from an ambitious 9.85m vehicles to a still blistering 9.5m units. Not only is the high price of gas and a dismal U.S. market contributing to Toyota's woes, it's also seeing slower than anticipated sales in Japan and Europe. The news comes a month after Toyota announced U.S. cuts of its trucks and SUVs. Helping to mitigate the sales decline are the white hot emerging markets of Russia, China, and India, where Toyota is doing very well.

While Toyota hasn't officially stated that it would be revising its sales projections downward, this isn't the first time we've heard a dip could occur. The news isn't all bad for Toyota, as reaching 9.5m units would still be the most Toyota has produced in one calendar year. Toyota is expected to officially announce changes to its global sales projections by the end of July.

[Source: Automotive News (subs req'd)]