Toyota Cuts Annual Production Target Again

The top-selling automaker in the U.S. for 2021 says it’s unlikely now to meet targets set in September.

Toyota Motor Company announced January 18 that it would revise its annual and monthly targets for 2022 and February down as it faces the beginning of a new year still burdened by a lack of available computer chips. The company said January 18 it would fall sort of the 9 million units it had hoped to build by March 31, 2022, the end of its fiscal year. Toyota had previously lowered its annual production target to 9 million from 9.3 million in early fall 2021 and held on to it despite further monthly production cuts later in the year.

Supply issues led the company to lower its monthly production target for February, as well. Toyota cut its production target for next month by 150,000 units to 700,000 vehicles—notably, still more than the 668,000 it made in February 2021.

In a release, Toyota noted that the company is facing the difficult situation most other global automakers have reported this year and last: A dearth of supplies making it difficult to take advantage of abnormally high demand.

“Current demand is very strong, therefore we were aiming for a high February production plan,” read a company release. “However, due to the impact of the continuing demand for semiconductors across all industries, we have adjusted our production plan.”

The release went on to note that the company doesn’t expect the shortage to end anytime soon. According to Toyota, it is watching the shortage of semiconductors closely and consulting suppliers “in considering the use of substitutes where possible in anticipation of a continuing shortage.”

The Japanese automaker managed to hold off the effects of the global semiconductor shortage longer than most other automakers, and as a result managed to sell more cars in the United States than General Motors in 2021. But supplier shutdowns caused by COVID-19 eventually caught up to Toyota and the company began cutting production plans late last year.

Despite the current production issues, the company plans on expanding production over the long term. Toyota Motors North America announced in December 2021 that it will build a $1.3 billion battery factory in North Carolina with enough capacity to supply about 1.2 million vehicles a year.