March will be one of the most crucial months for the U.S. auto industry in years.

U.S. consumers bought just under 1.2 million new cars and trucks in February, unchanged from a year ago. That follows a 3 percent drop in January — the first year-over-year decline since August 2010. So far this year, new vehicle sales have been on pace to hit a little more than 15 million for the […]

Mexico to Trump Japan as No. 2 Car Exporter to U.S.

Much of the new production is by Japanese companies drawn by the ability to move parts into Mexico without tariffs. Local governments have been competing for new plants by offering tax exemptions, employee training and improved highways connecting the plants to the U.S. border and Mexican ports. Just 25 miles from the new Honda plant, […]

Nissan profits beat estimates as weaker yen helps sales

Nissan has reported better-than-expected profits, helped by the weakening yen and by a recovery in sales in China. Japan’s second-biggest carmaker said profit rose 57% to 84.3bn yen ($825m; £503m) for the last months of 2013, beating analysts’ estimates. It also sold a record 5.1 million vehicles globally last year. The positive results come three […]

Toyota ends car production in Australia by 2017

Toyota is to end its vehicle and engine production in Australia by the end of 2017, effectively marking the end of the country’s carmaking industry. The company said it might scale down the operations of its development and technical centre in Australia as well. Last year, Ford and General Motors’ Holden unit also announced plans […]

Toyota is giving larger chunks of business to a smaller number of suppliers, and it is asking for cost cuts of 30 to 40 percent for some parts – in certain cases double that level.

“Behind the recovery at the big carmakers is their pressure on suppliers to cut parts prices. It’s been hitting us like a body blow,” said a senior executive of a company that makes drivetrain-related parts for a major Toyota supplier. At this small company based in Aichi prefecture, home to Toyota and much of its […]

Toyota may rethink Thai investment plans if crisis lingers

(Reuters) – Toyota Motor Corp (7203.T) may reconsider investing up to 20 billion baht ($609 million) in Thailand, and could even cut production, if political unrest drags on, the head of the Japanese automaker’s local unit said on Monday. Toyota is the largest car manufacturer in Thailand, producing 800,000 vehicles a year. Plans to increase […]

Japan Is Going In The Right Direction

The Japanese economy continues to be improving nicely. The latest quarterly “Tankan” survey — which measures the state of the economy via surveys of various businesses large and small — is out and it shows that business sentiment is at a 6-year high, surpassing levels right before the Great Financial Crisis. Abenomics continues to look […]

Nissan shares fall as it lowers profit forecast

Shares of Japanese carmaker Nissan have fallen 10% to 861 yen in Tokyo after the firm cut its full-year profit forecast. On Friday, the firm said it expected to make a profit of 355bn yen ($3.6bn; £2.2bn) for the year to 31 March 2014, down from an earlier forecast of 420bn. Nissan said tough conditions […]

Nissan Titan to get Cummins turbodiesel V8 in 2015

Nissan announced earlier today that its Titan pickup will get a Cummins turbodiesel in the 2015 calendar year. “We will definitely leverage the Cummins brand name,” said Nissan spokesman Dan Bedore. Cummins has been the sole supplier of diesel engines for Chrysler’s Ram pickup since 1989 — and the Cummins name is seen as a […]

Truck sales keep Japanese buoyant in U.S.

Honda market share in the US shrunk by 0.1% despite its vehicle sales jumping 6% from a year ago, as rivals have posted stronger growth helped by sales of light trucks. “Pickups and SUVs are growing in the US market, helping the Detroit-based carmakers… Our light-truck supply was relatively low, but we are introducing a […]