Toyota Motor Corp. has managed to keep its crown as the world’s biggest car manufacturer in 2013. Unfortunately, the Japanese automaker couldn’t become the first manufacturer to sell more than 10 million cars in a single year.
Toyota predicted it would breach the 10-million milestone this year, with sales of 10.32 million in calendar year 2014. That forecast represents a 4 percent increase over the 9.98 million cars it sold in calendar year 2013, the company said.
Last year, Toyota’s tally rose 2 percent to top the 9.71 million sold by General Motors. Volkswagen AG gave a rounded figure of 9.7 million units, but the German carmaker won’t give detailed results until March 13. It presumably finished third in the 2013 sales race.
“Toyota has come close to nearly 10 million units a year,” said Toyoda, grandson of the company’s founder. “But at today’s Toyota, we are not pursuing volume. Going on the offensive means making ever-better cars and changing the way in which we produce cars.”
Toyota’s new modular product development approach will power future expansion beyond the 10 million mark, he said. Dubbed Toyota New Global Architecture, or TNGA, it maximizes commonized designs and components to deliver what Toyota says will be better vehicles that are cheaper to engineer and manufacture.
The first TNGA vehicle is scheduled to arrive next year. With global sales booming at the top three, some goals may need recalibrating.