Toyota Motor Corp. said Thursday global production grew 11.7 percent in September from a year earlier to 841,915 vehicles, marking the first increase in nine months and indicating a recovery from the sales slump caused by the coronavirus pandemic may have begun.
Led by a 48.5 percent jump in China, the production figure was the highest level on record for September, according to the major Japanese automaker.
Toyota's global sales increased 1.9 percent to 837,049 units propelled by high demand in China, the world's largest auto market, as well as the popularity of new models.
The company's global output has been gradually trending towards a recovery after tumbling 54.4 percent in May amid the COVID-19 crisis. It reported a 6.7 percent fall in August and a 10.2 percent drop in July.
"It is hard to predict whether we will continue to recover or see impacts of the novel coronavirus again," a Toyota official said.
In September, the carmaker's overseas output increased 16.3 percent to 536,287 units, with production up 19.9 percent in Europe and 8.3 percent in North America.
Domestic production rose 4.5 percent to 305,628 vehicles, thanks to the popularity of the Harrier SUV and the Yaris compact.
In the April to September period, Toyota logged a 23.1 percent decline in global production from a year earlier to 3,501,041 units due to the pandemic.
Sales dropped 19.0 percent to 4,011,479 vehicles during the six-month period.
© Kyodo News International, Inc., source Newswire