Toyota Motor said this week it expects the Thai vehicle market to expand by over 3% to around 800,000 units in 2024 after declining by 9% to 775,780 units in 2023. The projection is based on market data compiled by the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI), which excludes some key brands, including BMW and Mercedes-Benz.

Toyota said it expects strongest growth this year to be in the passenger vehicle segment, which it forecasts will expand by 4% to 503,500 units. Commercial vehicle sales are forecast to grow by just 1% to 296,500 units, despite volumes plunging by around 29% last year.

The recent interest rate hikes and high household debt are expected to continue to hold back purchases of light commercial vehicles such as pickup trucks.

Toyota itself is targeting sales of 277,000 vehicles in Thailand this year, a 4% year-on-year increase following an 8% decline to 265,950 units in 2023, to claim a market share of just under 35%. This despite the entry of numerous Chinese brands into this market in the last year – targeting mostly the country’s fast-growing electric vehicle (EV) market.

Toyota said it aims to export 358,800 built-up vehicles from Thailand this year, a 5% drop from last year, reflecting weakening global economic growth and slower demand in key markets. The company’s total vehicle production in the country is forecast to decline by just under 1% to 615,700 units.

Separately, the FTI said it expects overall vehicle production in Thailand to rise by 9% to 2.0 million vehicles this year from 1.84 million in 2023.

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