Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Toyota considers price hikes as steel costs soar.

Toyota Motor Corp. said Wednesday that it was considering raising its prices in response to soaring steel costs, following a report that it will announce hikes in Japan for next month.

According to the Nikkei business daily, Japan's top automaker has began notifying affiliated dealerships of the planned price increases.

The increases of between one and three percent are likely to affect vehicles such as the Prius petrol-electric hybrid and the Dyna truck, the newspaper said without naming its sources.

The price of iron ore, a vital material to make steel, has soared in recent years due to rising demand, particularly in fast-growing China and India.

"We are aware of the current situation of higher raw materials prices," said Toyota spokesman Hideaki Homma.

He said senior Toyota officials are mulling whether to raise domestic prices to respond to soaring material costs although no decision has yet been made.

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