Toyota Halts Shipments of 6 Models to Southeast Asian Nations; Talks Underway With Local Authorities About When to Resume

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
Toyota Motor Corp. headquarters

BURIRAM, Thailand — Toyota Motor Corp. has stopped shipments of six vehicle models to five Southeast Asian countries, due to the safety scandal enveloping its subsidiary Daihatsu Motor Co.

An investigation found Daihatsu did not properly test its vehicles for collision safety. Daihatsu has suspended all shipments and halted operations at its Japan plants.

The six models are Toyota-brand vehicles that Daihatsu was involved in developing.

Toyota said talks are underway with the authorities in each country on when to resume shipments. The cars are currently not being sent to Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam or Cambodia.

Toyota suspended shipments of Veloz and Avanza compact cars and four other models from Wednesday, when a third party reported finding numerous instances of misconduct by Daihatsu over an extended period of time. Toyota has also reported details about the fraud to authorities in each country.

The certification system for vehicles differs in each country. In Thailand, Toyota will have the Veloz recertified based on the instructions of the Thai authorities.

The affected shipments make up about 5% of Toyota’s production in Asia and are not expected to have a great impact.

“We want to fully resume shipments next year,” Masahiko Maeda, Toyota’s Asia region chief executive officer, told reporters in Thailand on Saturday.

Daihatsu conducts business overseas through joint ventures with local companies, among other means, and has four plants in Malaysia and Indonesia. Daihatsu, which produced about 860,000 units overseas in fiscal 2022, supplies some of its vehicles to Toyota.

In Malaysia, Daihatsu has a 20% stake in local manufacturer Perodua Manufacturing Sdn. Bhd., which had the top share of sales volume, at 40%, in 2022. Although shipments have been suspended, production has continued.