Toyota Australia remained Australia's largest car exporter, shipping 65,397 cars in 2004 from its Altona plant in west Melbourne, Victoria state.

This was 24.8% more cars than its nearest rival, General Motors' Holden, exported last year.

It is the ninth year in succession that Toyota Australia has topped the automotive export charts.

In that time, the Japanese automaker's exports from Australia - one of its first export markets over four decades ago - have increased by 367% and in 2004 were worth around $A1.2 billion to the country's balance of trade.

Toyota became Australia's leading automotive exporter in 1996 when it exported 14,013 Camrys. Two years later it more than doubled that figure and within another five years it had doubled it again.

In 2003, Toyota became the first Australian carmaker to export over 60,000 vehicles in a single year.

Ninety-four percent of Australian Camry exports are to the Middle East where the model - which differs in detail and platform from those made in Japan and the US - is the top-selling passenger vehicle in Saudi Arabia.

Toyota Australia began exporting right hand drive cars in 1982 and sent its first Altona-built left-hand drive Camry to the Middle East in 1996. The company last year delivered its 300,000th Camry to the region.

It now exports to 23 countries, including New Zealand, Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Oman, Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait, Iran and South Africa.