TOKYO – Toyota has relinquished the title of the world's biggest automaker, reporting Monday that it sold 10.175 million vehicles worldwide in 2016, fewer than Volkswagen's 10.31 million.
General Motors reports its tally next week. If GM's number falls short, it will be the first time the German automaker has become No. 1.
It's a milestone achievement despite the taint to VW's reputation from a huge scandal over cheating on emissions tests. Booming China sales helped offset that damage.
Japanese automaker Toyota Motor Corp. has had that auto crown for the past four years, although it fell behind General Motors in 2011, when production was hit by a quake and tsunami in northeastern Japan.
Detroit-based GM was the top-selling automaker for more than seven decades until Toyota surpassed it in 2008.