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Toyota dethrones GM to change into America’s top-selling automaker in 2021

The Toyota Motor Corp. brand within the Toyota Metropolis Showcase exhibit on the firm’s Mega Internet automotive theme park in Tokyo, Japan, on Monday, Nov. 1, 2021.

Kiyoshi Ota | Bloomberg | Getty Pictures

DETROIT – Toyota Motor has dethroned General Motors as America’s top-selling automaker in 2021, marking the primary time since 1931 that the Detroit automaker wasn’t the best-selling automotive firm within the U.S.

It additionally marks the primary time a non-domestic automaker has taken the highest spot in America.

Toyota was capable of handle provide chain points higher, permitting it to remove GM’s throne for the primary time in 90 years. An ongoing scarcity of semiconductor chips prompted sporadic shutdowns of vegetation and led to record-low automobile inventories in 2021.  

GM stated Tuesday it offered 2.2 million automobiles within the U.S. in 2021, down by 12.9% in comparison with the yr earlier. Toyota, by comparability, stated it offered 2.3 million automobiles within the U.S. final yr, up by 10.4% in comparison with 2020. The distinction in gross sales between the 2 automakers was 114,034 automobiles.

Jack Hollis, Toyota North America’s head of automotive operations, downplayed the corporate’s No. 1 rating.

“Sure, we did surpass Common Motors in gross sales,” he informed reporters throughout a name Tuesday. “However to be clear, that isn’t our aim, nor will we see it as sustainable.”

GM has been the biggest vendor of automobiles within the U.S. since 1931, when it surpassed Ford Motor, in accordance with information from trade publication Automotive News.

GM’s shares jumped by as a lot as 6% throughout intraday buying and selling Tuesday after it stated the chip scarcity was easing and it elevated manufacturing on the finish of the yr.

GM stated its fourth-quarter manufacturing and wholesale deliveries have been up considerably from the third quarter as provides elevated. Supplier stock, together with in-transit automobiles on their method to sellers, was 199,662 on the finish of the fourth quarter, up from 128,757 vehicles and vans on the finish of the third quarter.

Toyota was capable of obtain the milestone by rising gross sales of each vehicles and vans final yr, regardless of a 25% decline in gross sales of its full-size Tundra pickup. Gross sales of its smaller Tacoma pickup elevated by 5.7% to 252,520 items.

It was a tough gross sales yr for GM as a result of semiconductor chip scarcity. Gross sales of its extremely essential Chevrolet Silverado pickup – its best-selling automobile – have been down by 10.8% to lower than 530,000 items.

Other than Ford, which offered 1.7 million automobiles via November, most main automakers are scheduled to report their fourth-quarter and 2021 whole home gross sales on Tuesday. New light-duty automobile gross sales are anticipated to be about 15 million in 2021.

Trade analysts and forecasters are blended on their gross sales forecasts for 2022 as a result of volatility available in the market. They vary from about 15.2 million automobiles to round 16 million automobiles or higher.

GM North America President Steve Carlisle stated the automaker plans to extend its gross sales and marker share subsequent yr, doubtlessly regaining its gross sales title.

“In 2022, we plan to make the most of the sturdy economic system and anticipated improved semiconductor provides to develop our gross sales and share,” he stated in a launch Tuesday.

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