Akio Toyoda will remain chairman of the Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association for one more year, after stepping down as Toyota Motor Corp.’s chief executive officer next month, the group said.
The departing CEO agreed to extend his tenure following a unanimous vote in January by members of the association’s executive board, JAMA Vice Chair and Isuzu Motors Ltd. President Masanori Katayama said Thursday.
JAMA collectively represents 5.5 million employees from 14 of the country’s automobile manufacturers. The industry is undergoing a “once-in-a-century change” as car manufacturers around the world aim to electrify their vehicles to counteract worsening climate change despite restrictive pandemic measures and ongoing component shortages, Toyoda said at a briefing Thursday.
Toyoda voiced his intention in January to resign from his JAMA post in keeping with the rule that the chairman must be a sitting president of an automaker. But he agreed to stay for another year. Toyoda, grandson of Toyota’s founder, will become chairman of the automaker after stepping down as CEO.
Incoming Toyota CEO Koji Sato was made a JAMA vice chair. Sato unveiled several changes to Toyota’s senior management last month as he prepares to take over, seeking to improve the carmaker’s strategy and messaging in the shift to an electric future.
When he was first appointed chair in 2012, Toyoda promised to protect Japan’s automotive industry and its reputation as a world leader.
“My feelings haven’t changed,” said Toyoda, who began his second term in 2018. “With the additional year I’ve been given, I will continue those efforts.”