Toyota said at the reveal of their third generation common rail diesel engines that diesel is a major part of their mid-term growth strategy.
Currently Toyota is the world’s second largest vehicle manufacturer (behind GM) with annual global sales of 7.5 million vehicles This equates to one vehicle coming off their production lines every 4.2 seconds - every hour of every day.
Toyota is financially the world’s strongest vehicle manufacturer. Its value is in excess of General Motors, Ford and DaimlerChrysler put together.
Speaking at the launch of the new four-cylinder 148bhp and 175bhp D-4D engines, Matt Harrison, marketing director of Toyota GB said, "The least powerful of these two engines will be seen first of all in additional models for the Toyota Avensis range. These go on sale in the UK from 1 July. The 175bhp unit will be introduced in the UK in 2006 and into other models such as the RAV4 and Lexus models in the future".
"In the UK in every sector where diesel matters, our diesel mix lags someway behind the segment diesel mix. Put simply, in the key volume sectors we are achieving strong petrol sales but weak diesel ones. We must address this imbalance and by introducing the new 2.2-litre D-4D engine into the Avensis this is the first step in a two-year strategy to grow our share of diesel sales in the key market segments of Supermini, Lower Medium, Upper Medium, Off-Road and MPVs".
Harrison added, "We are staggering the introduction of these engines because the growth of diesel sales in the UK’s Upper Medium segment over the last three years have been for models with mid-power 121-150bhp engines. Engines above 150bhp have consistently only accounted for around five per-cent of sales. With our current 2.0-litre D-4D 114bhp engine, which will continue in the Avensis line-up, we have only been able to compete in around one third of the upper medium diesel market. By introducing the 148bhp derivative it now gives us access to 95 per cent of the market opportunity".
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