GM sales hit 9.7M, but Toyota likely to lead

General Motors sold 9.71 million cars and trucks last year, probably not enough to beat out Toyota for the global sales crown, but about 200,000 better than Volkswagen.

DETROIT — General Motors sold 9.71 million cars and trucks last year, probably not enough to beat out Toyota for the global sales crown, but about 200,000 better than Volkswagen.

Toyota, the sales champion in 2012, will report its sales next week. It only needs to show a little growth to beat GM again.

GM said Tuesday that sales of light vehicles worldwide grew 4 per cent in 2013, led by growth in China and the United Kingdom.

The company’s sales in China rose 11 per cent to set a record. U.S. sales were up 7 per cent, slightly below the market’s growth of nearly 8 per cent.

Toyota sold roughly 9.7 million cars and trucks in 2012, recapturing the lead it ceded to GM in 2011.

GM was the top-selling carmaker for more than seven decades before losing the title to Toyota in 2008. But GM retook the sales crown in 2011 when Toyota’s factories were slowed by an earthquake and tsunami in Japan. The disaster left Toyota dealers with few cars to sell. The Japanese company has since recovered.

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