Toyota remains top automaker in global sales

Japanese auto maker beats Volkswagen, GM but forecasts downturn in 2015.

0 January 21, 2015
by Yuri Kageyama, The Canadian Press

Toyota-global-sales-leader-2014.-625TOKYO — Toyota Motor Corp. stayed at the top in global vehicle sales in 2014, but is pessimistic about this year.

The Japanese automaker sold 10.23 million vehicles, beating out Volkswagen and General Motors to take that auto industry crown for the third year straight. Toyota was less upbeat about the future, expecting to sell fewer trucks and cars this year, at 10.15 million vehicles, down 1 per cent year-on-year, according to numbers released Wednesday.

Volkswagen AG of Germany sold 10.14 million vehicles in 2014. Detroit-based General Motors Co. was third at 9.92 million vehicles, a company record. GM gave its tally earlier this month. Selling 10 million vehicles around the world in a year is a milestone for major automakers. And the race is intense as automakers increasingly compete in new markets.

Toyota’s sales grew 6 per cent in the U.S. from the previous year, 13 per cent in China, and 10 per cent in Brazil, according to the maker of the Camry sedan, Prius hybrid and Lexus luxury models.

Toyota suffered a setback in 2011, when its production was hobbled by the earthquake and tsunami in northeastern Japan. But it made a comeback as No. 1 in 2012.

GM had been the top-selling automaker for more than seven decades until being surpassed by Toyota in 2008. But it is Volkswagen that has been racking up stellar growth in recent years, beating GM last year.

© 2015 The Canadian Press

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