Toyota and partner to invest US$461m in Guangzhou

BEIJING: Toyota Motor Corp., the world's biggest carmaker by value, will invest 3.8bil yuan (US$461mil) with its partner Guangzhou Automobile Group to boost manufacturing capacity in China by a quarter to catch up with Honda Motor Corp. 

Toyota and Guangzhou Automobile Group will build Camry models in a new factory located in the city of Guangzhou, the companies said in a statement. The factory will start production in 2006 and have an annual capacity of 100,000 units 

Toyota is adding production and introducing new models to increase its share of China's car market to 10% from its current 3% by 2010. Honda, also partnered with Guangzhou Auto, builds four models in China and will add a fifth later this year. Toyota currently has capacity to make 375,000 units in China annually with its partner Tianjin FAW Xiali Automobile Co. 

“The China project will help Toyota to become a real global automaker and keep on track to become the biggest automaker in the world,'' said Atsushi Osa, who helps manage the equivalent of US$110bil at Sumitomo Mitsui Asset Management Co. in Tokyo. – Bloomberg  

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