Toyota announced its consolidated (i.e. including Daihatsu and Hino) 2012 sales plan today. It causes intensive head-scratching at other automakers, especially in Wolfsburg. Toyota plans to raise its 2012 global sales by a whopping 21 percent to 9.6 million.
In 2011, Toyota fell to place three behind GM and Volkswagen. In December, and again a week ago, we opined that Toyota would probably shoot for anywhere between 9.4 and 9.6 million this year. Toyota shoots for the top range. Consolidated, Toyota budgets for an ambitious 30 percent gain in Japan, and an 18 percent increase elsewhere.
The 9.6 million budgeted by Toyota are more than the 9 million that earned GM its number one ranking in 2011. GM is not standing still either. GM would need only a 7 percent gain to retain its top spot – if Toyota delivers on plan.
It looks a little different for Volkswagen. Volkswagen reported 8.2 million for 2011. It could be 8.4 million if they end up adding trucks made by Scania and MAN. Volkswagen would have to increase its 2012 pace by 18 percent to beat an on-budget Toyota. That would be tough given that Volkswagen is heavy in Europe (expected to contract in 2012) and China (expected to go sideways or down in 2012.) Gains of the Volkswagen Group in 2011 were 14.3 percent.
This year, the race for the top spots should be quite interesting. Unless the sky falls somewhere, that is.