7 Mar 2013

GM outsider appointed to Toyota board

9:14 am on 7 March 2013

Toyota has appointed a former executive at General Motors to its board.

Mark Hogan, a US national, is being brought in to help Toyota become more responsive to regional markets.

The BBC reports he is the first outsider in the company's history to be named to the board.

Toyota, once the world's largest vehicle manufacturer, is trying to regain the top spot from GM after suffering a number of setbacks.

These included a series of recalls that began in 2009 and involved 14 million models.

Other problems affecting the company in recent years include the 2011 earthquake and tsunami in Japan and flooding in Thailand.

The BBC reports the move is part of a number of changes announced by Toyota president Akio Toyoda, who is setting up two new divisions to look after North American, European and Japanese markets, and emerging markets.

Toyoto was founded 76 years ago. It forecasts a net profit of 860 billion yen ($US9.3 billion) for the financial year to 31 March, 2013, up from 780 billion yen.