Skip to main content
The Globe and Mail
Support Quality Journalism
The Globe and Mail
First Access to Latest
Investment News
Collection of curated
e-books and guides
Inform your decisions via
Globe Investor Tools
Just$1.99
per week
for first 24 weeks

Enjoy unlimited digital access
Enjoy Unlimited Digital Access
Get full access to globeandmail.com
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24 weeks
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24 weeks
var select={root:".js-sub-pencil",control:".js-sub-pencil-control",open:"o-sub-pencil--open",closed:"o-sub-pencil--closed"},dom={},allowExpand=!0;function pencilInit(o){var e=arguments.length>1&&void 0!==arguments[1]&&arguments[1];select.root=o,dom.root=document.querySelector(select.root),dom.root&&(dom.control=document.querySelector(select.control),dom.control.addEventListener("click",onToggleClicked),setPanelState(e),window.addEventListener("scroll",onWindowScroll),dom.root.removeAttribute("hidden"))}function isPanelOpen(){return dom.root.classList.contains(select.open)}function setPanelState(o){dom.root.classList[o?"add":"remove"](select.open),dom.root.classList[o?"remove":"add"](select.closed),dom.control.setAttribute("aria-expanded",o)}function onToggleClicked(){var l=!isPanelOpen();setPanelState(l)}function onWindowScroll(){window.requestAnimationFrame(function() {var l=isPanelOpen(),n=0===(document.body.scrollTop||document.documentElement.scrollTop);n||l||!allowExpand?n&&l&&(allowExpand=!0,setPanelState(!1)):(allowExpand=!1,setPanelState(!0))});}pencilInit(".js-sub-pencil",!1); // via darwin-bg var slideIndex = 0; carousel(); function carousel() { var i; var x = document.getElementsByClassName("subs_valueprop"); for (i = 0; i < x.length; i++) { x[i].style.display = "none"; } slideIndex++; if (slideIndex> x.length) { slideIndex = 1; } x[slideIndex - 1].style.display = "block"; setTimeout(carousel, 2500); }
Coronavirus information
Coronavirus information
The Zero Canada Project provides resources to help you make the most of staying home.
Visit the hub

Toyota expects to take a whopping $13.95 billion hit from a fall in global vehicle sales this year due largely to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Associated Press

Toyota Motor Corp. said on Tuesday it expects profit to drop by 80 per cent to its lowest in nine years, as Japan’s biggest automaker grapples with the impact of the novel coronavirus which has sapped global demand for vehicles.

The expected damage to Toyota’s bottom line highlights how car makers will struggle to recover from the virus in the coming months as they gradually restart factories after curbs on public movement prevented workers in many countries from commuting.

The industry expects limited output due to fractured supply chains and social distancing measures at plants, along with weak demand as job losses and concern about an economic downturn weigh on consumer spending on major purchases like cars.

Story continues below advertisement

Toyota, one of the world’s most profitable automakers, expects to take a whopping 1.5 trillion yen ($13.95 billion) hit from a fall in global vehicle sales this year due largely to the virus, yet it still expects to eke out an operating profit of 500 billion yen in the year to March.

“The coronavirus has dealt us a bigger shock than the 2008 global financial crisis,” Toyota President Akio Toyoda said at a livestreamed media briefing.

“We anticipate a big drop in sales volumes, but despite that we are expecting to remain in the black. We hope to become a leader of the country’s economic recovery.”

Toyota sees its operating profit in free fall from 2.44 trillion yen in the year just ended, to its weakest profit since the 2011-12 financial year.

The automaker forecast global sales of 8.9 million vehicles – a nine-year low – versus 10.46 million in the year just ended. It expects sales to recover to 2019 levels next year.

Toyota’s outlook came as rivals including Honda Motor Co Ltd. and General Motors have refrained from issuing forecasts, citing uncertainty about the coronavirus.

On Tuesday, Honda posted its weakest annual profit in four years, after a 28 per cent drop in fourth-quarter vehicle sales plunged the automaker into an operating loss of 5.2 billion yen, its first quarterly loss since the March 2016 quarter.

Story continues below advertisement

Japanese automakers are bracing for a year of falling car sales as economists anticipate a slow and patchy recovery from the pandemic.

As a result, some analysts see a cut in annual global vehicle sales by around a third, compared with an 11 per cent fall in 2009-10 after the global financial crisis.

Toyota expects sales to remain weak through December, before returning to 2019 levels some time next year.

DEMAND SLUMP

In the year ended March, Toyota said it took a 160 billion yen profit hit from the virus due to a cut in annual sales of 127,000 vehicles from a record high of 10.6 million last year.

The impact was felt hardest in North America, a key market, where sales fell 8 per cent during the March quarter, resulting in an operating loss there.

Despite the profit slump and a sharp cut to margins, Toyota said it would pour more than 1 trillion yen each into capital expenditure and R&D investment, keeping spending largely unchanged from last year.

Story continues below advertisement

“We cannot stop investing in the future,” Operating Officer Koji Kobayashi told reporters.

Be smart with your money. Get the latest investing insights delivered right to your inbox three times a week, with the Globe Investor newsletter. Sign up today.

Follow related topics

Report an error
Tickers mentioned in this story
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies