Toyota considers boosting output

TOKYO (AP) - Toyota Motor Corp. said Tuesday it is considering boosting its domestic car output capacity to meet growing overseas demand, but the auto maker hasn't made any decision on the details. 

Japan's largest auto maker hasn't built a new domestic production line since the early 1990s as the company has focused on boosting output at its overseas plants. 

A spokesman for Toyota said the company wants to increase its exports from Japan before it starts construction of new production lines and expands existing facilities overseas starting next year. 

The company is trying to meet strong demand in the United States, Europe and Asia. 

Toyota is looking into whether it can raise output at its directly operated plants or production subsidiaries' facilities to this end, the spokesman said, speaking on condition of anonymity. 

The company's current production capacity in Japan is 3.5 million vehicles a year.Toyota hasn't decided how much it aims to lift output or the size of any investment, the spokesman said. 

The Nihon Keizai Shimbun reported Tuesday that Toyota will invest about 50 billion yen (US$455.3 million/euros 374.8 million) through 2006 to raise domestic capacity to 3.8 million vehicles. 

Supported by strong overseas sales, Toyota in July revised up its global vehicle sales projection for 2004 by 28,000 vehicles to 6.61 million, up 9 percent from 2003. - AP

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