Toyota recaptures title of world’s largest automaker from Volkswagen

26 Oct 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Toyota beats Volkswagen, GM in global vehicle sales.

Toyota recaptured the title of world’s largest automaker from Volkswagen in the third quarter of 2015, suggesting that the Japanese automaker may retain the title for the full year. Toyota remained the top auto maker in global vehicle sales after the first nine months of this year, selling nearly 7.5 million vehicles, outpacing rivals General Motors and Volkswagen.Volkswagen AG lost the lead in global auto sales to Toyota Motor Corp. after claiming the No. 1 spot three months ago, as the German carmaker braces for consumer blowback from a widening emissions-cheating scandal.

German automaker Volkswagen had seized the top spot through the first six months of the year, edging closer to its long-running goal of becoming the globe’s biggest vehicle manufacturer for a full calendar year. Toyota Motor Corp.’s global sales for the first three quarters totalled 7.498 million vehicles, down 1.5 per cent from the same period the previous year, according to numbers released Monday. The figures include less than two weeks of sales after Volkswagen admitted its diesel cars were fitted with a software device to manipulate emissions recorded in official tests.

Now, the fourth quarter reflects a crucial test for Volkswagen, which is facing numerous investigations and a hail of criticism over its installation of manipulative software on 11 million vehicles to cheat emissions tests. The company has stopped selling the diesel cars involved in the scandal until it can deliver a fix, leaving dealers with a gaping hole in their lineup. Its sales may suffer because of a scandal, which hit last month, in which its cars were found equipped with software that allowed them to cheat U.S. emissions tests.

Even before the scandal erupted, some analysts thought Volkswagen’s dash for global sales had made the company cumbersome and complex with more than 300 models and almost 120 factories. After almost seven years without a redesign, the company is promising a sportier ride for its top-selling hybrid, an improvement in fuel economy of about 10 percent and an even bigger boost for an Eco version of the model.

Toyota planned to add about 1,400 workers at factories in Japan to ramp up production of the new Prius and its updated Land Cruiser sport utility vehicle, people familiar with the matter said in August. Toyota’s also betting improved acceleration and added safety features will lift demand for the $80,000 Land Cruiser, its most expensive SUV, in markets including the U.S.

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