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Akio Toyoda reportedly will become Toyota's next president in June

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Old 01-09-09, 06:14 AM   #1
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Default Akio Toyoda reportedly will become Toyota's next president in June

Reports: Toyota grandson to take top job
Associated Press

TOKYO – The grandson of Toyota Motor Corp.'s founder will take the helm of Japan's top automaker in June, newspapers said Friday.

Toyota's top executives will hold a board meeting as early as Monday to endorse the appointment of Akio Toyoda, 52, said the Nikkei daily, Japan's top business newspaper, citing no sources. Toyoda will officially take over leadership of Japan's auto giant following a shareholders' meeting in late June, it said.

Toyota is struggling to shore up its sagging sales at home and abroad amid a deepening global downturn, cutting output and the number of temporary workers.

It shocked the nation last month by forecasting it will experience its first yearly operating loss in 70 years for the fiscal year ending March 2009, underlining a rapid deterioration in the global auto market.

Apart from the Nikkei daily, Japan's top-selling Yomiuri newspaper and the Mainichi daily said in their evening editions Friday that Toyoda will take over the top job in June. It will mark the first time in 14 years that a member of Toyota's founding family will run the Japanese auto giant. Neither of the papers cited any sources.

The major Asahi newspaper also said in December that Toyoda — long groomed for the top job — will replace current president Katsuaki Watanabe as soon as April. Toyota denied the Asahi report, which did not cite sources.

Toyota spokeswoman Ririko Takeuchi on Friday declined to confirm the Nikkei report, saying nothing has been decided yet. She gave no further details.

The Nikkei said Watanabe is expected to become a vice chairman, and current chairman Fujio Cho will keep the post.

It's no secret that the charismatic grandson of Kiichiro Toyoda is a best-bet candidate for future president — a position in Japanese companies that wields great decision-making power and is the equivalent of chief executive in the U.S.

The friendly and unpretentious Toyoda, who has appeared before reporters in a racing outfit — unusual among staid suit-clad Japanese executives — has come to symbolize the rejuvenation of Toyota's management.

Called Toyota's "prince" by the Japanese media, he has been among the youngest executives to join the board in 2000. He became one of the company's eight executive vice presidents in 2005 — a number that has since been reduced to five.

The founder's family name is spelled with a "d," but the company name was changed to read Toyota as that was considered luckier according to Japanese superstition, Toyota says.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090109/...s_japan_toyota
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Old 01-09-09, 07:26 AM   #2
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I do truly hope that this becomes reality. If I remember, Akio Toyoda was a huge proponent of the IS F and really enjoys the car. That, combined with his age and general attitude, gives me hope for the return of sporting products to the Toyota lineup.

GS F and LF A are all but confirmed, but it would be nice to see small sporty cars return to Toyota dealers- Celicas, Spyders, and Supras hopefully...though a stable economic upswing would have to happen to justify these decisions. Akio gives me more hope than Watanabe, at least.
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Old 01-09-09, 07:35 AM   #3
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Oh so Toyota was someones last name?
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Old 01-09-09, 07:39 AM   #4
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Looks like it is decided. This article also is saying that Toyota is anticipating a $1.6 billoin loss!
http://jp.ibtimes.com/article/biznews/090109/26688.html

Most companies are named after their founders here.
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Old 01-09-09, 07:40 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MPLexus301 View Post
I do truly hope that this becomes reality. If I remember, Akio Toyoda was a huge proponent of the IS F and really enjoys the car. That, combined with his age and general attitude, gives me hope for the return of sporting products to the Toyota lineup.

GS F and LF A are all but confirmed, but it would be nice to see small sporty cars return to Toyota dealers- Celicas, Spyders, and Supras hopefully...though a stable economic upswing would have to happen to justify these decisions. Akio gives me more hope than Watanabe, at least.
I totally agree, but I'm not too optimistic for the short-term, given that the crappy worldwise economy is seriously crippling development funds for niche and sports cars. The LFA is safe because it's pretty far along and, since it was always meant to be a limited run of 500 cars, it's just a matter of building them over a longer stretch of time. On the other hand, the "Toyobaru coupe" has already been delayed about a year. And are you sure that the GS F is "all but confirmed"?

Longer-term, I, too, am cautiously optimistic that more enthusiast-friendly Toyota, Scion and Lexus models will return, in all price ranges.
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Old 01-09-09, 09:11 AM   #6
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Here's my wildest guess:

Toyota will officially announce the LF-A to celebrate Akio Toyoda becoming the president.
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Old 01-09-09, 09:17 AM   #7
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It would definitely be nice if Toyota could bring back the MR-2 as well.

Love that turbo rocket when I as in college
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Old 01-09-09, 09:17 AM   #8
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Quote:
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Here's my wildest guess:

Toyota will officially announce the LF-A to celebrate Akio Toyoda becoming the president.
That could be a very real possibility...
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Old 01-09-09, 10:11 AM   #9
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good news. Toyota needs 2 things: cars with manual or DSG trannies, and turbos. Please bring back the mid-90's! Oh, and bring the good stuff to the US instead of shortchanging us as usual (Estima>Sienna, 2JZGTE Aristo>GS300, no Chaser, etc)
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Old 01-09-09, 10:31 AM   #10
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Wantanabe was awesome and he should be given props. Toyota made more money under him than under anyone else. He was though a businessman which meant no exciting products and a bunch of SUVs, trucks and blah. He also let Lexus seperate and continued to see the value in Lexus and invested in it.

Akio Toyoda hopefully will find a way to push sportier products that are profitable and also extend the Lexus "F" and "F-sport" line. I have very high hopes for things under his leadership.
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Old 01-09-09, 12:58 PM   #11
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Yeah I think the current leadership did what they could with an unprecedented difficult situation. That said, Mr. Toyoda may bring a more performance-emphasized focus to Toyota, which can help image...so long as they keep their current efforts at more efficient and eco-friendly cars.
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Old 01-09-09, 04:10 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iKenn View Post
Oh so Toyota was someones last name?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toyota#Name
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Old 01-09-09, 06:33 PM   #13
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I am all for this.
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Old 01-10-09, 04:42 AM   #14
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Mr Toyoda,

BRING BACK THE SPORT IN TRD OIGM:LKMGKLAJWODA:ZJXVCHASFJQUIOFHSDFJ
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Old 01-23-09, 11:57 AM   #15
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Is this good, bad or indifferent?:

Toyota to Replace Top Managers
By WardsAuto.com Staff From Wires

Toyota Motor Corp. reportedly will replace most of its top managers after Akio Toyoda takes over the role of president from Katsuaki Watanabe.

Toyoda, currently an executive vice president, will replace the other four executive vice presidents at TMC, as well as many of the auto maker’s senior managing directors, which currently number 19, Bloomberg says.

Toyoda, the grandson of TMC founder Kiichiro Toyoda, was named the auto maker’s new president earlier this week. He will assume the role, pending shareholder approval, in June.

Meanwhile, Toyota is said to be considering voluntary layoffs at its U.K. and North American operations, Reuters reports.

The cuts, which likely will be achieved through early-retirement offers, are to include 1,000 workers.

A Toyota North America spokesman is quoted as saying no involuntary layoffs are being considered by the auto maker at this time.

Toyota’s sales worldwide, including the U.S., its largest and most-profitable market, have been falling steadily as the auto maker, which just passed General Motors Corp. for the No.1 global sales title, succumbs to the ongoing economic slowdown.

Toyota repeatedly has adjusted vehicle output at its plants worldwide, as well as cut temporary workers at the manufacturing level and at its U.S. sales arm.
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