Only 70,000 vehicles. This is the difference that this year enabled Volkswagen to repeat another year as the world's largest carmaker. The German car group sold 10.83 million units, surpassing almost the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi alliance (up 1.4%), which sold 10.76 million cars. In third place was the Japanese Toyota, which grew by 2%, with a total of 10.59 million units registered. Despite retaining the leadership, which it held since 2016, when it surpassed Toyota, Volkswagen is one that grows at least three, 0.9% more than in 2017.
All three increased despite the complicated year in which the sector was going, with the entry into force of the WLTP and the debacle of diesel in Europe; tariff war and volatility in some markets. "In the second half of the year things were not easy for us. [Este récord] This was possible thanks to the combination of outstanding products and a high level of trust of our customers, "said Volkswagen, Christian Dahlheim.
The fastest growing brand of the German group is Seat, which increased its registrations by 10.5% compared with 2017 to 517,600 units. Volkswagen brand had flat behavior, with a slight increase of 0.2% to 6.24 million cars. Its truck segment (with MAN and Scania) is what allows it to stay ahead of Nissan and Renault (who do not sell this type of car). If only turrets and vans were taken into account, the Alliance would lead the world market.
Nissan, meanwhile, reduced sales by 2.8% to 5.65 million cars, but the fall was offset by an increase of 3.2% in Renault (3.88 million units), and Mitsubishi, which improved by 18, 3%, to 1.21 million cars.
Above the podium, General Motors is placed fourth. The United States, according to JATO forecasts, cut sales by 4.91% over the previous year to 7.94 million units (JATO considers its data in 53 markets, accounting for 85% of the total volume).
In the fifth place were Hyundai and Kia, which grew by 3.2 percent, and sold 6.8 million cars.
Sixth is Ford. The US giant is leading the biggest drop in the top 10 manufacturers. The company registered 5.49 million vehicles in 2018, according to JATO, a collapse of 10.4%. The parent company recently announced that it is trying to return to profitability in Europe, a market in which it is working badly, and for that at the beginning of the month announced that it will cut its workforce in the factories it has on the Old Continent.
The US giant General Motors sold the Opel brand to the PSA in 2017, which allowed the French company, which also owns Peugeot and Citroën, to grow most among the top ten manufacturers last year, with 3.9 million cars
The German firm was incorporated in the PSA's results in August 2017, and this is Opel's first full year in the French company. In total, the German company registered 1,038,057 cars, representing 26.7% of the sales of the French group. Without counting Opel, sales of the company would be reduced by 12%.