The past year and a half was a challenging one for the automotive industry. The excise tax saw sales dip momentarily, but it's been mounting a charge lately. But despite all that, Toyota has been resilient, consistently keeping their market share in the country.
For the past four years, Satoru Suzuki has been at the helm of the company, guiding the automaker through the challenging times. Now, Suzuki's term as TMP president has come to a close.
“His hands-on leadership approach propelled Toyota to rebound from last year’s tough market conditions, and we are fortunate to have a President who truly led by example,” said Alfred Ty, Chairman of Toyota Motor Philippines.
From 2016 to 2019, Toyota saw over 15 all-new and updated models under Suzuki's leadership. One of the first set of models during his tenure was the second-generation Fortuner and Innova, both of which are best-sellers in their segment. The all-new Camry and RAV4 were also launched here during his time, and it's thanks to him that the world premiere of the sixth-generation Hiace was hosted here as well. Of course, let's not forget the all-new Corolla Altis Hybrid which aims to bring hybrid power to the masses.
But it's not just the introduction of new and updated models that defines Suzuki's legacy in Toyota Motor Philippines. He also strengthened Toyota's commitment to the CARS (Comprehensive Automotive Resurgence Strategy) Program with the continuous production of the Innova, as well as the fourth-generation Vios.
While his term is coming to a close, Suzuki initiated three new programs that will kick off in the near future. These are the the PHP 4.5-billion Luzon Hub, the Toyota Mobile App to better connect customers with dealers; and expansion to a new business model to explore long-term leasing of vehicles.
But enthusiasts will have a lot to thank Suzuki for as he green-lit the Supra for the Philippines. It may have been tough for the automotive segment, but Saturo Suzuki, along with Toyota, have kept the market buzzing with activity.
Domo arigato, Satoru Suzuki. We wish you the best on your next assignment.