Toyota Motor Corp is planning to introduce two brands exclusively for the Chinese market beginning next year, a senior executive has told Reuters. The brands will be launched through the Japanese company’s two Chinese joint ventures, namely with FAW Group and Guangzhou Automobile Group, but Toyota’s senior managing officer Hiroji Onishi did not say which of the two would launch first.

Rivals Nissan and Honda are among those that have China-only brands, in an attempt to compete with the lower end of the Chinese market dominated by local brands. The former recently announced that it will launch an electric car for its Venucia brand in 2015. Venucia is the product of a partnership between Nissan and Dongfeng Motor.

Last year we reported that Toyota was planning to introduce in 2013 an affordable model in China based on the Etios small sedan and that production was scheduled to take place at two factories in the country – can’t be mere coincidence, can it?