Toyota maintained its title as world’s best-selling automaker for the first quarter of 2013 – though the gap began to close as the Japanese maker struggled to regain its momentum in the critical Chinese market.
The industry giant — which regained its sales crown last year after a disastrous loss of production in 2011 due to Japan’s devastating earthquake and tsunami — reports selling 2.43 million vehicles between January and March. But that was a 2.2% decline. General Motors maintained its second-place position at 2.36 million vehicles, but closed much of the gap with a 3.6% increase.
Volkswagen, which finished 2012 in third-place, maintained that podium position for the first quarter after a 5.1% increasing in global demand brought its sales to 2.27 million. VW officials have openly set a goal of becoming the world’s number one maker before the end of this decade.