Toyota to revise upwards its Japan sales forecast image

Toyota Motor Corporation is expected to raise its Japan sales outlook for this year by 100,000 vehicles, hoping to benefit from the revival of the eco-car subsidy, the Nikkei business daily reported.

Last month, the Japanese carmaker had forecast record sales of 8.48 million vehicles, with 1.53 million sales in its home market. Toyota expects to sell more green cars this year since the Japanese government has revived the subsidies on purchase of eco-friendly vehicles, the daily newspaper wrote. Toyota’s revised sales forecast, which boosts its global sales estimate by 22 percent, includes its Lexus luxury brand, Aqua hybrid and a plug-in hybrid that will launch on January 30.

Japanese automakers are hoping the governments’ incentives for eco-friendly cars will boost sales by about 900,000 vehicles in 2012. According to Toshiyuki Shiga, the head of the Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association (JAMA), growth in the Japanese auto industry is depending on incentives, as exports are not likely to grow consistently because of the strong yen and overseas economic slowdown.

The incentive program is worth 300 billion yen and is aimed at boosting domestic sales of electric vehicles, hybrids and other environmentally friendly cars. The Japanese government also decided to extend a tax break for green cars for three years, previously scheduled to expire in April 2012.