Toyota New Zealand is the importer and distributor of new Toyota and Daihatsu vehicles in New Zealand. It also imports used vehicles from Japan and refurbishes them at its plant in Thames. Until 1998 it also assembled a variety of vehicles.
Toyota assembled a variety of vehicles in New Zealand from the 1960s through to late 1998. Complete knock down (CKD) kits were brought in from Japan and assembled in plants located in Thames and Christchurch. Locally produced components were also used, and included items such as tyres, seats, trims, and glass. Vehicles that were locally assembled were Corolla, Corona, Celica, Hilux, and Hi-ace.
However, during 1998 the New Zealand Government decided that tariffs on imported cars would be abolished. This led to the remaining four local assemblers (Toyota, Honda, Nissan, and Mitsubishi) to announce that they would end local assembly and switch to importing fully built-up vehicles. Cars manufactured in Australia, including Toyota Australia's Camry, were already being imported into New Zealand duty-free under the Closer Economic Relations (CER) agreement.