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The Journal Gazette

Thursday, March 07, 2013 2:21 am

Key dates in the history of Toyota Motor Corp.

By The Associated Press

Key dates in the history of Toyota Motor Corp.:

- 1918 Sakichi Toyoda sets up loom production company.

- 1937 Sakichi's son Kiichiro Toyoda sets up Toyota to make cars.

- 1957 Toyota exports vehicles to the U.S. for the first time.

- 1981 Shoichiro Toyoda, son of Kiichiro and Akio's father, becomes president of Toyota's sales company, and after merger with the production division in 1982, heads the new entity.

- 1984 Production starts at Toyota's joint venture with General Motors, New United Motor Manufacturing Inc. or NUMMI.

- 1988 Toyota starts production in the U.S. with its own factory.

- 1997 Toyota launches gas-electric Prius hybrid.

- 2005 Katsuaki Watanabe becomes president, embarks on aggressive growth strategy.

- 2008 Toyota becomes world's No. 1 automaker by vehicle sales.

- 2009 Toyota posts first annual net loss since 1950, mainly because of the global financial crisis.

- 2009 Akio Toyoda becomes president.

- 2009-2010 Toyota battles massive global recall fiasco, most seriously in the U.S.

- 2011 Earthquake and tsunami disaster in Japan. Auto suppliers wiped out, Toyota production and sales plunge.

- 2011 General Motors regains crown as world's No. 1 automaker, the title it had held for seven decades before Toyota's rise.

- 2012 Toyota returns as world's No. 1 automaker.

- 2013 Toyota announces managerial overhaul, including appointing its first board members from outside the company.