Toyota reported that its second-quarter operating profit in North America nearly doubled from 32.5 billion yen last year to 64.9 billion yen (about $807 million) this year. That comes as sales here jumped 45 percent year-over-year for the second quarter, to 598,000 vehicles sold in North America.
While the increases sound impressive, it's important to remember that Toyota output and sales suffered last year after the company's factories were shut down by an earthquake and tsunami in Japan. In other words, this year's results look even more impressive because Toyota fared so poorly in 2011.
"In all regions, vehicle sales increased… because we suffered from the supply disruption due to the Great East Japan Earthquake in the same period last year," Toyota Motor Company executive vice president Satoshi Ozawa said in a statement.
Promising results in the U.S. mean Toyota has upgraded its full-year financial outlook. Through the first ten months of 2012, Toyota has sold 1.73 million vehicles in the U.S., up 30.0 percent from the same period in 2011. On that basis, the company raised its prediction of full-year global net profit by 2.6 percent to 780 billion yen ($9.7 billion) thanks to the strong sales results -- a big leap from last year's actual net profit of 283.5 billion yen (about $3.5 billion). Toyota expects to sell 8.75 million vehicles worldwide this year, up nearly 20 percent from the 7.35 million vehicles it sold last year.
Toyota's results have been hampered by sales struggles in Europe and China. In Europe, the company is suffering from the same far-reaching recession and declining car sales as other automaker. In China, Toyota sales dropped 49 percent in September after many Chinese citizens rebelled against the Japanese company in the wake of a political conflict between Japan and China. Toyota sells about 12 percent of all its cars in China.
Sources: Automotive News, Toyota