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Toyota Again Halts Production Lines at Central Japan Plant

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
Toyota Motor Corp. headquarters

NAGOYA (Jiji Press) — Toyota Motor Corp. on Wednesday revealed that production lines at the Fujimatsu plant of wholly owned unit Toyota Auto Body Co. in Kariya, Aichi Prefecture, have been halted again.

Wrong parts may have been used in the vehicle-assembly process of the Noah and Voxy minivans, leading to the suspension, according to the leading Japanese automaker. Production of the Alphard and Vellfire minivans manufactured on the same production lines was also halted.

“We need to continue conducting quality inspections in our [production] process,” a Toyota official said.

Production lines at the plant had just resumed on Wednesday morning, after a two-day temporary suspension of operations from Monday caused by flaws found in Toyota’s applications for Japanese government approval necessary for vehicle manufacturing and sales.

10%t of Denso shares to be sold

Toyota Motor, Toyota Industries Corp. and Aisin Corp. will sell a total of nearly 10% of Denso Corp. shares, Denso said Wednesday.

Toyota Industries, Aisin and Denso are all part of the Toyota group. The share sale will mark an unwinding of cross-shareholdings within the group.

Cross-shareholdings for financial support and takeover defense “may have been too much,” said Masahiro Yamamoto, head of Toyota’s accounting division. “We are in talks not only with Denso but also with other [group] companies,” Yamamoto added.

Given the current market price of Denso shares, proceeds from the sale are expected to be around ¥700 billion, with about ¥290 billion going to Toyota.

Toyota plans to use the money to invest in electric vehicles and other growth areas.

The price for the sale will be decided in mid-December, and the sale will be carried out by Dec. 25.

As of the end of September, Toyota owned a stake of about 24% in Denso in terms of voting rights. After the sale, its stake will decrease to around 20%. Denso will remain an equity-method affiliate of Toyota.

Toyota Industries’ stake will fall to around 6% from about 10%, while Aisin will sell all of its 2% stake.