Market share of automobile

automobile image automobile sales changes automobile manufacturers market share

Automobiles sales kept five million units in spite of crisis and ressions!

  • The market size of automobile in Japan is about 20 trillion yen.
  • Toyota has the top share of domestic automobile market.
  • Mercedes-Benz, BMW and Volkswagen are popular imported car brands in Japan.

The market size of automobile in Japan is about 20 trillion yen(about 200 billion dollars) in 2017 according to the report of Ministry of Economy,Trade and Industry. The number of new automobiles in 2017 in Japan was about five million units. The number of that in the world was 74 million units, so the number of that in Japan account for 6.7% of the world automobiles market.

The peak of automobiles sales was 7.8 million units in 1990, that have dropped to almost 70% of its peak now. However, the automobiles sales have kept about five million units though there were some recessions from 1990 to 2017, the financial crisis in 2007 and the aftermath of the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami.

the number of new automobile

The sales of passenger cars in 2017 are about 4.3 million units which accounts for 80% of the total automobiles sales. The sales of commercial cars are about 0.8 million units, that was 2.1% increase from the previous year because of sightseeing bus for foreign visitors. It is said the sales of automobiles after 2020 will decrease because Tokyo Olympics over and the consumption tax increase. In addition, personal consumption of Japan is affected by aging society.

The total automobile production units in Japan are about 9.5 million. Half of them is for exports to foreign companies because the number of new automobiles in Japan is about five million units. The automobile production for exports supports the total automobile production in Japan. However, Japanese automaker seek for overseas production because of decreasing cost, avoiding foreign exchange loss and tariff. The automobile production in Japan will decrease since they continue overseas production.

The total sales of Japanese automakers are about 60 trillion yen though the market size of automobile in Japan is about 20 trillion yen. Japanese automakers earn the remaining 40 trillion yen in the overseas. Among the Japanese automakers, Toyota Motor Co. is the largest automaker in Japan, its sales is about 30 trillion yen. Toyota also has the top share of domestic automobile market. Honda Motor Co. is the second, Suzuki Motor Co. is the third, Daihatsu Motor Co. is the fourth and Nissan Motor Co. is the fifth. Toyota group accounts for over 40% of domestic automobile market because Daihatsu is a subsidiary of Toyota.

automaker  market share pie chart

Toyota Motor Co. used to be the automobile part of Toyota Industries Co which was found by Sakichi Toyota. It grew and became the largest automaker in Japan with big hits, CROWN, COROLLA, CENTURY, CAMRY and more. It launched Lexus series which was the luxury brand of Toyota in USA from 1989. It started selling PRIUS which was the world's first HV(hybrid car) in 1997.

Toyota is well known as a company which is proactive in development of fuel-efficient automobiles and next-generation automobiles. It seeks for expanding HFCV(hydrogen fuel cell vehicle), and began to sell the first HFCV "Mirai" which means future in Japanese from 2015. However, delivery of Mirai is set for 2019 or 2020. Toyota also focus on EV(electric vehicles) with keeping development of FCV recently.

toyota mirai image

By the way, Japan imports about 350 thousand cars from abroad for a year. The number of imported cars is not influenced or affected by the rate of exchange but by driver's taste and trend. Some Japanese always buy imported cars in all ages. Mercedes-Benz, BMW and Volkswagen are popular imported car brands in Japan now.

Toyota, Honda, Nissan and Suzuki are listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange. Foreign investors can invest in them on NYSE by ADR(American Depositary Receipt). In addition, they can do them through many ETFs, MAXIS Nikkei 225 ETF(NKY), iShares MSCI Japan ETF(EWJ), Wisdomtree Japan Hedged ETF(DXJ) and more.