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Toyota remains the world’s largest car seller, expanding its lead on VW

TOKYO – Toyota said on Friday its vehicle sales grew 10.1 percent last year, making it the world’s largest automaker for the second year in a row and outstripping its closest rival, Volkswagen Group.

The carmaker says sales of 10.5 million vehicles in 2021, including sales of affiliates Daihatsu Engines and Hino Motors.

That compares with 8.9 million won delivered by Volkswagen in the same period, 5% less than in 2020 and the lowest sales figure in 10 years.

Automakers have been forced to cut output as semiconductor shortages during the coronavirus pandemic disrupted supply chains, spurring competition for the key component among electronics makers consumption.

However, the Japanese company weathered the pandemic better than most other automakers because of its home market, Japanand parts of Asia, less affected than Europe.

Toyota, which reports third-quarter earnings on February 9, said it is likely to miss its production target of 9 million vehicles for the business year ending March 31 because of disruptions related to COVID-19.

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