China fined Toyota at $ 12.5 millionJanuary 7, 2020
A huge fine had to be paid by decision of a local court. The case was opened by the local antitrust office. Toyota agrees with the fine, but declined to comment.
The Chinese antitrust bureau fined Toyota 87.6 million yuan, or about $ 12.5 million. The reason for the penalty was the brand strategy for Lexus car sales. In China, it was believed that the Japanese concern deprived local dealers of the freedom of financial gain, and also violated the rights of Chinese buyers.
Between 2015 and 2018, Toyota rigidly set the sales and resale value framework for Lexus cars in Jiangsu. Such a decision directly affected the autonomy of dealerships in relation to pricing policy, and also damaged customers. It was also found that during the same period, the company also established sales strategies. She offered customers discounts, as well as certain options at an established price tag. Such measures are harshly condemned in the local market.
Despite a huge fine, as well as a drop in the local market, Lexus was able to gain momentum. According to the results of the first 11 months of 2019, demand grew by 21 percent, to 180,200 new cars.
The company representative noted that they recognize the fine, and respect the court decision. However, comments were never received.
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