Toyota plans to make changes to its production processes in the near future.
The company is aiming to improve the performance, economy and handling of its future models via a major weight-saving campaign and by lowering the centre of gravity of its next-generation cars.
There will also be an extensive overhaul of product development processes, a new generation of platform architectures and increased use of communal parts.
Central to the plan is the Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA) platform, which will spawn its first new model — the next Prius — in 2015.
In contrast to past methods, new models of much the same size and mechanical make-up will be developed in component and structure-sharing clusters rather than individually, and across regions, too.
Company vice-president Mitsuhisa Kato says the potential cost saving “varies by vehicle, but the target is 15-20 per cent or even further; 20 to 30 per cent across the entire process is being aimed at. And the excess is to be reinvested”.