Section 1. Heightened Presence in the North American Market

Item 1. Increasing Presence in the North American Market

Toyota climbs to No. 2 position in the U.S.

In the 1990s, the U.S. automotive market grew steadily throughout most of the decade as the overall economy expanded, reaching an unprecedented number of more than 17 million vehicles sold in the year 2000. Although the market subsequently contracted slightly following the economic downturn caused by the 2001 collapse of the IT bubble and rising gasoline prices, sales were steady at around 16 million vehicles annually through to 2007.

Toyota took several proactive measures, including expansion of local production, release of new models suited to the U.S. market, and development of its sales network. As a result, the company saw a significant increase in sales. Breaking down this increase, Toyota sold more than 900,000 units in 1988, 1.05 million in 1990, and reached another milestone with 2.06 million in 2004, growing further still to 2.62 million vehicles in 2007. The company's market share also rose - from 6.1 percent in 1988, passing 10 percent in 2001, and growing to 16.1 percent in 2007. During this time, Toyota's annual number of vehicles sold passed Chrysler Corporation in 2006 and bettered Ford Motor Company in 2007, securing the No. 2 position behind General Motors Corporation (GM, now General Motors Company).

The Canadian economy was also strong from the latter half of the 1990s as the neighboring U.S. economy grew. Toyota's sales in Canada continued to grow, reaching 100,000 units in 1997 and 150,000 in 2002. The GT-10 (Global Team reinforce-10) project aimed at achieving a 10 percent market share kicked off at Toyota Canada Inc. in 2002, and the target was reached the following year in 2003. Sales continued to grow steadily in following years, reaching 190,000 vehicles with a 12 percent market share in 2006, and passing 200,000 units in 2007.

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