Japanese automakers reckon the US market will recover to about 13m new light vehicles in 2011, up from 12m this year.

Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association chairman Toshiyuki Shiga, also chief operating officer at Nissan Motor, told Reuters in Tokyo the seasonally adjusted annual sales rate for light vehicles in the United States had been growing at about 1m units in recent months, indicating a steady recovery in demand.

"We should be looking at a market of about 13m," he said.

The report noted the was at the high end of most industry estimates for 2011, which put sales between 12m and 13m vehicles, still well down on the 16m routinely sold before the financial crisis.