Japanese Automakers Report Production Increases

Automakers in Japan reported sharp increases in global production for first half of the year -- underlining a recovery in auto demand from a dismal plunge a year earlier.

TOKYO (AP) -- Japanese automakers reported sharp increases Tuesday in global production for the first half of the year, and for June in particular -- with Toyota seeing a 16.2 percent surge, underlining a recovery in auto demand from a dismal plunge a year earlier.

Toyota Motor Corp., the world's biggest automaker, said it produced 739,683 vehicles in June, as sales grew in Japan and abroad, and exports expanded to North America, Asia, the Middle East and Africa.

For the first half, Toyota's worldwide production totaled 4.36 million vehicles, marking a 46.8 percent rise from the previous year -- underlining the company's recovery from a battering by global car recalls and the financial crisis.

Nissan Motor Co., which is allied with Renault SA of France, reported June worldwide production of 354,425 vehicles, up 38.8 percent from the previous year, as global sales marked a record for the month of June.

For the first six months of the year, Nissan produced 1.93 million vehicles, up 61.9 percent on year.

Honda Motor Co. reported a 17.7 percent increase in global production at 303,549 vehicles in June. Honda said Japan sales were up for 12 months straight, and exports also recovered.

Honda produced 1.80 million vehicles around the world during the first half, up 36.7 percent from the previous year, and hitting records for the company in regional production in Asia and in China, it said.

Mazda Motor Corp.'s global production rose 24.6 percent to 115,146 vehicles in June from the previous year, and added 63.9 percent to 627,856 vehicles for the first half.

Mitsubishi Motors Corp. reported a 59.8 percent jump in global production in June to 92,324 vehicles, and first half production at 506,987 vehicles, up 83.2 percent, with exports booming to China.