Report: Volkswagen Now World's Largest Automaker

Colum Wood
by Colum Wood

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]

Colum Wood
Colum Wood

With AutoGuide from its launch, Colum previously acted as Editor-in-Chief of Modified Luxury & Exotics magazine where he became a certifiable car snob driving supercars like the Koenigsegg CCX and racing down the autobahn in anything over 500 hp. He has won numerous automotive journalism awards including the Best Video Journalism Award in 2014 and 2015 from the Automotive Journalists Association of Canada (AJAC). Colum founded Geared Content Studios, VerticalScope's in-house branded content division and works to find ways to integrate brands organically into content.

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  • Erin Erin on Nov 11, 2009

    I'm always suspicious of stats and big jumps like this. Thanks for breaking it down and showing us what's going on.