TOKYO (AP) — Toyota Motor Corp. said Wednesday that it has raised its 2007 sales projection for China on solid sales of small cars and aims to sell even more vehicles there next year.
Toyota, which appears to be on track to beat General Motors Corp. as the world's top automaker as soon as later this year, raised its sales estimate in China for this year to 480,000 cars from 430,000 due to the popularity of its Vios small car and the newly introduced Camry, Toyota spokesman Naoki Oku said.
The company sold 308,000 cars in China in 2006.
For 2008, Toyota aims to boost sales to 700,000 vehicles in the world's second biggest auto market after the U.S. That would be up 46 percent from this year's revised sales target.
The higher projection is partly because the company will begin production of the Yaris compact at a local plant, he said.
The company has said it aims to sell 1 million vehicles in China early in the next decade. Oku said it is too early to say how soon Toyota can achieve the goal.
Executives at some Japanese car makers expect auto sales to grow to 10 million around 2010 in China, up 39 percent from the 7.2 million in 2006.