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Toyota's March Sales Jump 35 Percent

Wed, 03/31/2010 - 4:12am

NEW YORK (Kyodo) — Toyota Motor Corp's U.S. sales rocketed about 35 percent in March from a year before after Japan's top automaker offered sharp discounts to lure back consumers after massive recalls, U.S. media reported Tuesday.

The forecast was provided by Jim Lentz, president of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc. on the sidelines of a forum sponsored by the National Automobile Dealers Association and IHS Global Insight, the reports said.

Earlier this month, Toyota launched a large-scale sales promotion campaign featuring zero-percent financing for five years on top-selling models, including the Camry.

This, combined with resumed advertising, is expected to have propped up Toyota's March U.S. sales to around 180,000 units, a steep recovery from dismal showings in January and February.

In February, new car sales by Toyota tumbled 8.7 percent from a year before, making it the only slumping company among major U.S., Japanese and South Korean automakers operating in the United States, according to another research firm, Autodata Corp.

Major automakers are due to report March U.S. sales results on Thursday.

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