Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Earthquakes and the Automotive Industry

If we were to judge 2011 simply by natural disasters alone, this year would have to go down as one of the craziest in recent history. Magnitude 5.9 earthquakes shook up the east coast and cracked the Washington monument. Hurricane Irene came along and caused significant damage with its 135 mph winds. Tornadoes struck multiple parts of the country, including Joplin, Missouri. Overseas, one of the largest earthquakes in recorded history ravaged Japan on March 11. Business and production slowed tremendously as time and resources were allocated to disaster recovery. So how has the economy in the automotive industry been affected?

Here at Lou Fusz Toyota, you may have noticed our inventory of new vehicles has been lighter than normal. The disaster in Japan knocked out more than 650 Toyota part suppliers, which directly decreased the amount of Toyota vehicles available at dealerships across the country.

After March 11, Atsushi Niimi, head of production at Toyota in Japan, made a crucial decision for the company: pour resources first and foremost into the Prius, the world’s top selling hybrid vehicle. Within weeks, production rates were at 30-40% for the vehicle, and have grown since. 4,000 temporary workers were then hired in July to help get the ball rolling for over all production, and a full recovery has finally been made as of this fall.
Toyota’s decision to focus on hybrids is a good sign for the future of the automotive industry and the environment, as oil prices continue to climb and population rates increase worldwide.

With the capability to reach 50 miles per gallon, the Prius is one of the most efficient hybrids available. It is also a great step forward for automakers in reaching the White House’s proposed fuel efficiency standard of 54.5 mpg for vehicles by 2025.

Do you think we will see all vehicles reaching 50 plus miles per gallon in the next 15 years? 


  1. Hi,
    its really nice post. i apprentice for your post. thanks for shearing it with us. keep it up.
    Steering Rack

  2. Thanks Evan, I appreciate the kind words.

  3. Interesting article!! Thanks a lot!!