Toyota Crowned World's No. 1 Car Manufacturer

General Motors was often referred to as the world's largest automaker as it managed to lead the overall chart of the automotive industry for no less than 77 years. Unfortunately for the American carmaker but pretty obvious if taking into account the economic downturn recorded in this side of the market, Toyota managed to beat General Motors and became world's number one car manufacturer with nearly 9 million units delivered last year.

General Motors today announced that it sold 8.35 million vehicles in 2008, while Toyota's last year sales totaled 8.972 million. Even though it represents a 4 percent drop compared to the previous year, Toyota snatched the leading chair and is now expecting even higher sales through a much improved vehicle lineup.

Surprisingly, General Motors says it has absolutely no interest in such a ranking and explains that given the financial problems it faced in late 2008, such a decline is fairly understandable.

“They passed us in terms of market cap, profitability, cash flow long ago. I focus on the sales and how to make us successful. … Honestly this is not a measure that I pay a lot of attention to,” Fritz Henderson, GM president and chief operations officer, said about Toyota's leading position, according to

Despite all these apparently-strong performances, Toyota is not even close to performing well in the overseas market as the Japanese manufacturer last December announced that 2008 may bring the first ever operating loss. But even so, Toyota said it is confident that its future lineup, which is mostly based on the newly-announced hybrid models and fuel-efficient or environmentally-engines, will help the company boost sales which obviously coincides with securing the leading position it has just won.
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About the author: Bogdan Popa
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Bogdan keeps an eye on how technology is taking over the car world. His long-term goals are buying an 18-wheeler because he needs more space for his kid’s toys, and convincing Google and Apple that Android Auto and CarPlay deserve at least as much attention as their phones.
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