New vehicle sales in Thailand more than doubled year-on-year to a record 115,945 units in May, according to data released by Toyota Motor Thailand.

Sales in May 2011, at 55,851 units, were held back by inventory shortages due to the devastating earthquake and tsunami in Japan earlier that year.

Key Japanese vehicle manufacturers reported a very strong rebound in the month, with Toyota volumes rising by 233% to 43,644 units while Honda reported a 308% rise to 15,601 units.

Cumulative sales for the five month period were up by 33.1% at 481,366 units, compared with 361,753 units a year earlier, putting the market well on target to exceed Toyota's 2012 forecast of 1 million units.

Vehicle production increased by 105% to a new record of 202,834 units in May, according to the Federation of Thai Industries, helped by a resumption of production by Honda Motor at the end of March.

Year-to-date output rose by over 28% to 844,031 units and the Federation expects the industry’s full-year volumes to exceed 2.2 million units.

Vehicle exports jumped by over 122% to 85,988 units, for a value of THB 41.45 billion (USD 1.31 billion). Over the five-month period, exports were up by 11.3% at 362.142 units.