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Old 06-12-2007, 01:00 PM
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Arrow Toyota surpassed GM as top carmaker in 2006: journal

1 Million Toyota Hybrids on the road

"A little-known Chinese microvan played a role in Toyota's victory," the magazine, published by Crain Communications, said on its website.

In its final tally for 2006, GM included the seven-seat microvan and other Wuling-brand vehicles built by a three-way venture with China's Shanghai Automotive Industry Corp. (SAIC) and Liuzhou Wuling Automobile even though it owns less than half of the company, the journal said.

Automotive News credited 51 percent-owner SAIC for the 420,140 units the venture sold in 2006, putting GM's global sales at 8,679,860 units in 2006, against 8,808,000 for Toyota.

In its ranking, Automotive News Data Center includes sales of a subsidiary in the total for the parent company with the majority stake.

GM, which is in the throes of sweeping restructuring but is growing rapidly in China, has claimed the top spot for 76 years, including 2006.

In April, Toyota and GM announced sales figures for the first quarter of 2007 which showed the Japanese automaker edging past its U.S. rival by 90,000 units. The news prompted extensive media coverage as the first time ever for the switch at the top.

Toyota's figures, which correspond with Automotive News' tally, include sales at units Daihatsu Motor Co. 7262.T and Hino Motors Ltd. 7205.T . GM's comprises a dozen brands, including Chevrolet, Buick, Opel and Saab.

Toyota is almost certain to take the lead for all of 2007 even by GM's count after it projected sales of 9.34 million units against the U.S. giant's forecast for 9.2 million.

Source: [url=http://www.earthtimes.org/articles/show/71827.html]Earthtimes.org[/url]
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