North American veteran returns to lead U.S. revival
Title/responsibilities: Director; Sales and government relations in North America. Based in New York.
Experience: Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. 1993-96; Toyota Motor Sales president 1999-2003; headed Toyota's China operations 2003-07
Expectations: Dealers hope the much-admired Inaba can restore growth to Toyota's U.S. operations. President Akio Toyoda, who recruited Inaba to return to the automaker, says he wants North America to have more autonomy.
Former purchasing chief tackles global manufacturing
Title/responsibilities: Executive vice president; global production, including North American plants
Experience: Head of purchasing 2007-09; head of manufacturing group 2005-07; president, Toyota Motor Manufacturing North America, 2002-05
Expectations: Niimi, a proponent of "bigger doesn't mean better," fits in well with Toyoda's back-to-basics emphasis. He is known for replacing robots with workers because humans can suggest improvements.
Returnee takes on high technology
Title/responsibilities: Senior managing director; corporate planning, information technology, e-Toyota
Experience: Former general manager of global purchasing, business development; one-time executive at Toyota's pickup-bed plant in Long Beach, Calif.
Expectations: Ihara's mandate is to make Toyota a more tech-savvy company, a top priority for Akio. He is one of 3 executives who had retired upstairs to a Toyota affiliate but were recruited back.
"Father of the Prius" runs r&d
Title/responsibilities: Executive vice president; r&d, design
Experience: Head of global production 2005-09; head of vehicle engineering 2001-04; chief engineer of first Prius
Expectations: Uchiyamada will lead the push to make technology a cornerstone of Toyota's future growth. Of the 5 previous executive vice presidents, he and new president Toyoda are the only ones who remain.
Kaizen guru anointed new defender of the Toyota Way
Title/responsibilities: Director; streamline production
Experience: Various jobs as a floating manufacturing adviser, including senior technical executive and manager of the powerful Operations Management Consulting Division. He is a disciple of Taiichi Ohno, creator of the Toyota Production System.
Expectations: Hayashi is charged with drumming the Toyota Way back into a work force that strayed from the path. He is known for quizzing line workers about product flow and fining plant managers for misplaced pallets.