Business

Toyota passes VW again to be world's top automaker

Toyota Motor Corp. has reclaimed the title of the world’s biggest automaker after the first nine months of 2015, dethroning Volkswagen AG which sold the most in the first half of the year.

Volkswagen sales remain flat amid emissions probe while Japanese car company is expanding

Toyota Motor Corp.'s global sales for the first three quarters totalled 7.49 million vehicles, down 1.5 per cent from the previous year. (Associated Press)

Toyota Motor Corp. has reclaimed the title of the world's biggest automaker after the first nine months of 2015, dethroning Volkswagen AG which sold the most in the first half of the year.

Toyota sold 7.49 million vehicles in the three quarters to the end of September, down 1.5 per cent from the same period last year.

Its closest rivals were Volkswagen, which sold 7.43 million vehicles and General Motors Corp., which sold 7.2 million.

GM was the world's largest automaker for almost 70 years, until Toyota surpassed it for the first time in 2008.

Volkswagen sales for the first nine months of the year are almost unchanged, despite the scandal over rigging of emissions tests for its diesel vehicles.

Recalls all round

The German automaker plans to recall as many as 11 million vehicles worldwide to fix the diesel engine software and has predicted a hit to its sales in 2016.

In the past two months, VW sales have slowed in both North America and Europe as consumers lose trust in the brand.

But both GM and Toyota have also suffered damaging recalls. GM sales are down one per cent after it was forced to recall 6.3 million cars worldwide over a faulty ignition switch that slipped out of the run position and could lead to accidents.

Toyota was caught up in the recall of Takata airbags which forced its CEO to apologize to customers and shareholders. About 33.8 million cars with Takata airbags were recalled worldwide, from 10 different manufacturers.

With files from the Canadian Press

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