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CEO Akio Toyoda is clinging to a lead over Volkswagen AG as the world’s top-selling carmaker on surging demand for SUV including its revamped Toyota Highlander and Lexus GX models. Photo: Reuters
CEO Akio Toyoda is clinging to a lead over Volkswagen AG as the world’s top-selling carmaker on surging demand for SUV including its revamped Toyota Highlander and Lexus GX models. Photo: Reuters

Toyota profit beats estimates as US SUVs eclipse Japan slump

Net income in the April-to-June period rose to 587.8 billion, beating the 497.3 billion average of 12 analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg

Tokyo: Toyota Motor Corp, the world’s biggest automaker, said quarterly profit beat analyst estimates as surging SUV sales in the US eclipsed shrinking demand in its home market.

Net income in the April-to-June period rose to ¥587.8 billion ($5.7 billion), beating the ¥497.3 billion average of 12 analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg. The Toyota City, Japan-based carmaker maintained its ¥1.78 trillion profit forecast for the fiscal year ending in March 2015.

Chief executive officer Akio Toyoda is clinging to a lead over Volkswagen AG as the world’s top-selling carmaker on surging demand for sport utility vehicles including its revamped Toyota Highlander and Lexus GX models. Toyota’s performance in the US market has softened the blow from falling sales in Japan after the nation’s first sales-tax increase in 17 years.

They sell an awful lot of high-end SUVs, Mark Yockey, a New York-based managing director at Artisan Partners, which oversees $31.3 billion in equities including Toyota, said by telephone before the company released results. There’s a waiting line to buy Highlanders in the US, and those sell at much higher margins than if you’re just selling Corollas. BLOOMBERG

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