Toyota Motor Corp. will reach 1 million new-car sales in Europe within two years, a level it last attained before the global financial crisis, the region's boss told a British newspaper.
"There is absolutely no reason for Toyota to sell fewer than 1m cars in Europe," Toyota Motor Europe CEO Didier Leroy told the Financial Times in an interview.
The company's sales in its European markets, which include Russia, will pass the 1 million mark by 2012 or 2013, he told the newspaper in an interview published last Wednesday. "We will start to grow in the pan-European market," Leroy said.
Toyota Europe's sales first hit the 1 million mark in 2005, and reached a record 1.2 million in 2008, before declining sharply during the financial crisis and a series of recalls that damaged the Japanese carmaker's reputation, the Financial Times reported.
Toyota sold 808,000 cars in Europe and Russia last year, but its sales this year will be "much higher than that," Mr Leroy told the paper.
Toyota expects a sales boost from the launch of a new generation of the Toyota Yaris small car later this year and the introduction of the Lexus CT200h gasoline-electric hybrid small hatchback.
Leroy said Toyota expects to regain the 40,000 units of vehicle production lost in Europe after the March earthquake and tsunami in Japan.