Japan: Into Third Place

Japan's busy automakers last week rolled out a pair of gifts. The first, personally delivered to Emperor Hirohito's palace by Nissan Motor Co. President Katsuji Kawamata, 62, was a 100-m.p.h. limousine—at last ending imperial dependence on foreign makes. The second was a gleaming batch of figures. They showed that in 1966 Japan had bumped Britain out of its No. 3 spot, moved in behind the U.S. and Germany in world car and truck production.

A Place to Park. Now Japan's fastest-growing industry, autos are matching the country's phenomenal successes in cargo ships, cameras, steel and electrical equipment. Japanese manufacturers last...

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