Toyota came out on top again this 2021 in the world. Despite the restrictions and the chip shortage, the Japanese auto giant managed to retain its position as the world’s biggest automaker for the second year in a row. The company even widened its lead from Volkswagen.
In a press release, Toyota announced that it sold 10.496 million vehicles globally for the full year of 2021, which includes sales from Daihatsu and Hino brands. For reference, that’s a 10.1% increase over its 2020 sales figures. In comparison, Volkswagen sold 8.882 million vehicles over the same period, 5% than in 2020 citing delays in delivery brought by the chip shortage.
“Being number one has never been Toyota’s focus, and we see our sales performance as the collective result of each individual customer’s decision to support our brands. Our company’s goal is to be the best brand for safety and quality,” said Toyota spokesperson Shiori Hashimoto.
It’s not surprising to see Toyota at the top once more. In the US, the Japanese automaker managed to overtake General Motors (GM) as the best-selling brand. It’s the first time in nine decades that GM didn’t lead the list of best-selling automakers in the US.
What makes their achievement even more impressive is that the automaker failed to reach its original production goal. Throughout 2021, the company had to temporarily shut down its plants in Japan several times due to the chip shortage. The automaker even had to adjust its target production volume at the last minute. While other companies also had to pause production, it seems Toyota managed to weather the issues better.
This 2022, Toyota will begin sales of electric vehicles starting with the bZ4X. With it, the Japanese automaker might even be able to stretch its lead even further as demand begins shifting towards electric and electrified models.