Toyota Motor Corporation is the world’s largest vehicle maker for a second year in a row, beating both GM and Volkswagen.
The company produced 9.98 million automobiles in 2013, an increase of 2.4% compared to 2012, Toyota announced yesterday.
General Motors sold 9.71 vehicles and Volkswagen delivered just over 9.7 units.
Toyota believes its sales will top 10.32 million in 2014, including those for subsidiaries Daihatsu Motor Co., Ltd. and Hino Motors, Ltd.
If it manages to reach 10 million units it will be a world first for any automaker.
General Motors had been the top-selling automaker worldwide for seventy years, it was overtaken by Toyota in 2008, and then again in 2012.
The Japanese carmaker has made a dramatic comeback after the earthquake and tsunami of 2011 that hit northeastern Japan, damaged its suppliers and seriously affected production.
(Source: Toyota Motor Corporation)
Toyota sold well worldwide, but not in Japan
In 2013 Toyota sold well globally, but sales declined in Japan where the market has been stagnant for a long time.
US sales reached nearly 2.24 million vehicles, an increase of 7% from 2012, while in China 917,000 new vehicles were delivered, a rise of 9%.
Toyota believes it can deliver 3% more vehicles in the US this year and 20% more in China, totaling 2.4 million and 1.1 million units respectively.
Toyota facing growing competition
In the fourth quarter of 2013, Toyota outearned both General Motors and Volkswagen combined.
According to experts in North America and Europe, the company now faces a rebound among American carmakers and an aggressive Volkswagen that has significantly increased investments both in China and the US.
Sanjeev Varma, Managing Director of Detroit-based Stellar Alliance Group LLC, said to Bloomberg Finance:
“The competition is getting more intense. VW is number one in China, GM number one in the U.S., and all three automakers are scaling up investment in product development and on new models.”
150 million vehicles sold in Japan and 210 million globally since 1935
Toyota’s cumulative vehicle production in Japan exceeded the 150 million mark on December 5th, 2013, the company announced today, a milestone that took 78 years and 5 months to reach, and started with the Model G1 truck in August 1935.
By the end of December 2013, Toyota’s total cumulative global production of vehicles reached about 210 million. The Corolla accounts for 25.45 million units of the total cumulative sales in Japan.
The gap between Toyota, General Motors (GM) and Volkswagen (VW) is closing. In 2012 Toyota sold 460,00 more units than GM, compared to 270,000 more in 2013. The gap between GM and VW in 2013 was 100,000 units.