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Toyota has announced new sales and production targets for 2012, which, if met, could place it back on top as the world’s largest automaker by volume. According to a just-released sales and production plan outline, the Japanese auto giant aims to manufacture 8.48 million Toyota, Lexus and Scion models in 2012, a significant 20 percent increase over this year’s projected 7.9 million unit sales figure.
In 2008 Toyota stole the title of world’s largest automaker from General Motors, which had held it for the previous 76 years and has continued to stay firm in the number one spot ever since. However, that three-year run is expected to conclude at year’s end, with GM taking over the top spot once again. In fact, with Toyota’s supply issues in 2011, due to the Japanese earthquake and tsunami, the automaker is likely to slip to third in the overall sales race with Volkswagen placing second.
Beyond 2012 Toyota continues to forecast growth, though of the less dramatic sort, with projected production of 8.98 million units in 2013 and sales of 8.95 million units.
There may still be two months to go, but General Motors is all but certain to reclaim the title of World’s Largest Automaker for 2011. GM last held claim to producing the most vehicles back in 2007, and for the 76 years before that, before being ousted by Toyota in 2008. Toyota has since retained that position for two more years, with Volkswagen emerging onto the scene to be a major player.
In fact, success by VW and GM, along with faltering sales by Toyota (with a number of factors including this year’s earthquake and tsunami) will mean Volkswagen will most likely finish second, with Toyota slipping to third.
So far this year, GM’s sales total 6.79 million, a million ahead of Toyota’s 5.77 million units, with VW selling 6.17 million units.
Further down the list in fourth place is the combined totals of Nissan and Renault with 4.93 units, while the growing Korean juggernaut of Hyundai and Kia has amassed 4.73 million. In sixth place is Ford at 4.27 million units.
Despite several reports to the contrary (including our own), Toyota is in fact still the world’s largest automaker.
Just last week it was announced by several news agencies that Volkswagen had taken over the top spot, having come from as far back as fourth just over a year ago, to quickly pass Ford, General Motors and then Toyota. Those reports, however, have no proved worth interpreting, as have the sales numbers.
The numbers did show VW with a total of 4.4 million units made, while Toyota managed “just” 4.2 million units for the first three quarters of 2009. Volkswagen’s numbers, however, included vehicles sold by other automakers that it owns part of – but not a controlling share. Volkswagen does not release a breakdown.
Toyota, on the other hand, does, and the 4. 2 million total is entirely made up of the Japanese automaker’s products. If Toyota were also to include sales for companies that it owns a minority share in, its total would then be 4.9 million units.
[Source: Automotive News via LeftLaneNews]
Toyota’s reign at the top was a short one. Year-to-date sales by manufacturer now list Volkswagen as the world’s largest automaker. So far for 2009, Volkswagen has a combined sales tally of 4.4 million units – 400,000 ahead of Toyota.
Volkswagen’s tremendous rise from as far back as fourth place just a year ago, was driven on by the worldwide recession, which saw automakers like General Motors and Toyota lose ground. Toyota suffered significantly in the U.S., much more so than Volkswagen, due in part to VW’s small exposure in the North American marketplace. A generous cash-for-clunkers stimulus package that was put into place in Germany early on, also helped, as did a new line of vehicles for the Chinese marketplace.
But that’s not the only reason for Volkswagen’s success in 2009. Having recently purchased (or merged with, if you prefer) Porsche, Germany’s largest automaker now gets to include all the sales figures of Germany’s most renowned sports car maker.
It remains to be seen if Volkswagen will hold on to the title once all the vehicles are tallied-up at the end of the year. Volkswagen has not released a projected total, but Toyota has forecasted a final number of 7 million units.
[Source: The Guardian]
Initial first quarter vehicle sales has German carmaker in top spot
If Q1 results are any indication, VW may overtake Toyota as the number one car manufacturer by sales in 2009, and this comes before the German automaker starts selling its new sixth-generation Golf.
Just a few weeks ago we reported that industry research firm R.L. Polk predicted Volkswagen would overtake General Motors as the world’s second-largest automaker in 2009. While not entirely a surprise, what is shocking news is that VW may actually claim the number one spot, limiting Toyota’s run at the top to just one year.
The news comes as first quarter sales figures begin to trickle in. Volkswagen sold roughly 1.39 million vehicles during Q1 for 2009, this compares to Toyota’s forecasted figure of 1.23 million vehicles.
The worldwide economic downturn is as much to blame for Toyota’s poor fortunes, as it is to credit for VW’s good ones. Toyota’s forecast is down 47 percent from Q1 last year, while VW managed to gain market share despite an overall decrease in sales. VW’s Q1 results give the company an 11 percent market share worldwide.
“Volkswagen has the luck of being strong in the markets that are currently growing, while Toyota is exposed to those that are collapsing,” Ferdinand Dudenhoeffer, head of the Center for Automotive Research in Gelsenkirchen told Automotive News.
While Toyota has been exposed to the most troubled international markets, Volkswagen has not – due in part to its relatively small share of the U.S. market. Volkswagen can also thank strong sales in China and Brasil, as well as right at home in Germany – thanks to strong incentive programs by both VW and the German government. In Germany during Q1, car sales actually increased by 4.5 percent.
During the first quarter of 2008, VW sold just 1.57 million vehicles, as compared to Toyota’s 2.41 million, and with numbers like that it’s no wonder just a year ago VW’s claim of becoming the world’s largest automaker by 2018 seemed like a pipe-dream. A worldwide recession certainly can change things.
[Source: Automotive News]