Toyota’s overseas production will exceed output from its Japanese facilities at the end of the year for the first time in the company’s history. Global output for Toyota will top 8.6m units this year, with more than 4.3m cars planned for production in factories outside of Japan. Strong sales in most markets have seen officials revise output numbers from the 8.47m cars planned at the beginning of the year, to the current 8.6m target. Officials also estimated domestic production in 2007 at 4.27m units and overseas output of just 4.2m units.

Most of its overseas production is credited to its plants in North America and China, and plans to open new facilities in Russia and India next year will see the gap between domestic and overseas production spread further. One of Toyota’s strengths is its habit of building plants where it sells the most cars, which sees its reduce logistic costs as well as create goodwill with local residents.

Japanese rivals Honda and Nissan have already seen their overseas production exceed domestic output.