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Toyota Plans to Protect Camry as Top-Selling U.S. Car

Toyota Camrys sit on the sales lot at Bredemann Toyota in Park Ridge, Illinois. Photographer: Tim Boyle/Bloomberg
Toyota Camrys sit on the sales lot at Bredemann Toyota in Park Ridge, Illinois. Photographer: Tim Boyle/Bloomberg

Toyota Motor Corp., the world’s largest automaker, plans to protect the Camry sedan’s position as the top-selling U.S. car, a company sales executive said.

“I’m very passionate about that,” Bob Carter, senior vice president of the carmaker’s U.S. sales unit, said yesterday during an Automotive Press Association event in Detroit. “The mid-size sedan market is the largest segment in the industry and we want Toyota to continue to be America’s favorite car, period.”

The mid-size Camry has been the No. 1-selling U.S. car for 11 consecutive years, and remains in the top spot through August. For much of 2013, Camry deliveries were lower than a year earlier. A 22 percent surge last month pushed Camry to a gain of 2.3 percent for the first eight months.

Toyota, based in Toyota City, Japan, offered incentives averaging $2,560 for each Camry sold in August, up from $1,879 a year earlier, based on an estimate by, an auto pricing and data company in Santa Monica, California. That was above the industry average for mid-size sedans of $2,193, said Jessica Caldwell, senior industry analyst for Edmunds.

“Our incentives, while they are up from Toyota’s historical averages, they are still less than where the competition currently is,” said Carter, who didn’t provide specific figures. “The bottom line is, the Camry’s No. 1 because it’s a great car.”

After the speech, Carter declined to comment on whether the Camry needed updating.

“I have nothing to announce today but I will tell you that we like being No. 1 in the largest segment and we’ll stay there,” Carter told reporters.

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