Toyota Motor Corp. is still the biggest carmaker in world in 2013, selling 9.98 million units in the calendar year for a 2-percent surge over 2012. The Japanese carmaker is predicting that it would surpass the 10-million milestone this year, selling 10.32 million units in calendar year 2014 -- a modest 4-percent increase over the 2013 figure.
In 2013, close rivals General Motors and Volkswagen AG sold 9.71 million and 9.7 million units, respectively. The German carmaker’s figures were still not final as it has yet to publish detailed results in March 13.
Toyota managed to defend its sales crown that it lost to GM in 2011, when the earthquake-tsunami disaster in Japan affected production and inventory for much of the year. GM had the best-selling global crown for almost 80 years before Toyota overthrew the US carmaker in 2008.
In 2012, the Japanese carmaker managed to reclaim the throne from GM after selling 9.75 million units, edging GM by 451,000 units. GM shrank the difference to 266,000 units last year, boosted by a 7-percent sales hike in Asia and North America. GM posted an overall sales growth of 4 percent in 2013.
Toyota had forecasted in August 2013 that its global sales would climb to 9.96 vehicles in 2013, which includes that of the Toyota, Lexus and Scion brands, as well as that of its Daihatsu minicar and Hino truck-making subsidiaries.
Toyota first forecasted in 2007 that it would achieve global sales of 10.4 million in 2009. No thanks to the global economic meltdown, Toyota’s unintended acceleration recalls and the 2011 quake, the carmaker has to delay the achievement of the 10-million target.