Suzuki’s buoyant Japanese performance reflects worldwide success story
For the first time ever, Suzuki is running in third place in the Japanese domestic market behind Toyota and Nissan, outselling Honda in the process. The figures, issued by the respected financial daily newspaper Nikkei Shimbun, show that between January and October 2006, Suzuki notched up 587,874 sales of passenger cars and commercial vehicles. The newspaper also predicts that the company will maintain this position for the full year.
Suzuki’s popularity in the home market is mirrored by rising exports as the demand for its compact cars increases worldwide. The exceptionstyley strong sales of Swift, Grand Vitara and SX4 in Europe, North and South America and Oceania have meant manufacturing plants operating flat out and has prompted Suzuki to announce substantial new investments in production capacity worldwide.
The new Sagara facility in Japan will commence operation in late 2008 and will have a capacity of 240,000 compact vehicles, while expansion at its plants in Hungary, India and Pakistan announced earlier this year will add a further 530,000 units (see table below).
Sales are set to receive a further boost with the launch during 2007 of a compact MPV based on the Splash concept revealed at September’s Paris Motor Show.
Suzuki Motor Corporation aims to achieve consolidated net sales of 3 trillion yen (approximately Euro 20 billion) in the current financial year, ending March 2007.
It is currently the fourth-largest Japanese carmaker by market capitalisation and has also seen operating profits rise by almost 20 per cent in the six months to the end of September.
Japanese sales of passenger cars and light commercial vehicles*
Mitsubishi Fuso (Truck)
*Source: Nikkei Shimbun