TOKYO - Toyota Motor Corp., Asia’s biggest automaker, reported an increase in monthly global vehicle production for the first time in 12 months.
Output in August rose 10.6 percent to 626,817 vehicles, the first increase after the March 11 earthquake and tsunami that devastated northeastern Japan. Overseas production rose 9.8 percent to 374,443, the company said. Domestic output gained 12 percent to 252,374, also the first gain in a year, after the government ended subsidies for fuel-efficient cars last September, the company said.
Japanese carmakers have been hiring temporary workers to boost production to make up for lost output. The natural disasters caused shortages of parts and electricity. Toyota has begun hiring temporary workers and expects to recruit as many as 4,000 in Japan. The company expects its North American output to normalize by the end of this month.
Nissan Motor Co., Japan’s second-biggest carmaker, built 385,112 vehicles worldwide last month, a gain of 24 percent from a year earlier.
The Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association said demand for cars in Japan in the six months ending March 31 may rise 17 percent from a year earlier to 2.97 million vehicles, while it expects a 3.3 percent decline to 4.45 million for the full fiscal year.
Honda Motor Co., Japan’s third-largest carmaker, said its global production fell 9.3 percent from a year earlier to 261,524 vehicles in August.