Toyota Motor Corp. stayed the world’s top-selling automaker for the fourth straight year and only company to deliver more than 10 million vehicles as Volkswagen AG fell back amid its emissions scandal.
Global sales for Toyota, including its Hino Motors Ltd. and Daihatsu Motor Co. units, fell 0.8 percent to 10.15 million vehicles last year, according to a company statement. Volkswagen earlier this month reported a 2 percent drop to 9.9 million, while General Motors Co.’s deliveries rose 0.2 percent to 9.8 million.
Toyota’s result caps a year in which Volkswagen led its Japanese rival through the first six months, only to relinquish the top spot amid an unprecedented crisis. Already dealing with slumping sales in China, Volkswagen’s emissions scandal has forced it to halt sales of diesels in some markets and scramble to repair 11 million vehicles. The German company also has to mend its reputation and rethink the goal of surpassing Toyota, a key objective under former Chief Executive Officer Martin Winterkorn, who resigned in the wake of revelations the company had employed defeat devices to beat exhaust tests.