Autoblog Backs GM in Fight for Global Dominance

Robert Farago
by Robert Farago

On the subject of the contest between GM and Toyota for the title "World's Largest Automaker," Autoblog jeffe John Neff accepts an unnamed source (via Reuters) and pronounces GM the winner. Strangely (for a man who's devoted a sizable chunk of cyber-space to the battle), Neff writes that "owning this title makes little difference to either automaker." Readers familiar with Toyota's profits– which dwarf GM's– would be forgiven for thinking that's where Neff's going. Readers familiar with Toyota's growing U.S. market share– as opposed to GM's shrinking market share– would also be forgiven for thinking that's where the story is about to go. Uh-uh. "Even if Toyota does pass GM in global sales for 2008, however, we don't expect it will be able to keep the title for very long before the General snaps it back. GM has a stronger presence in China and is doing very well in emerging markets, while Europeans seem to have taken a liking to the Chevy brand over there. If GM can get its U.S. sales back up, we expect it will remain the world's largest automaker." And as my Dad likes to say, if my grandmother had wheels, she'd be a trolley car.

[FYI John Neff discusses blogs vs. the trad media with his pals here.]

Robert Farago
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  • Chris Haak Chris Haak on Jan 24, 2008

    The news is just in from Automotive News - when you subtract GM's JV sales in China with Wuling, Toyota comes out on top by a mile. From the article: "It was widely reported this week that the two automakers finished in a dead heat for the No. 1 spot. Here is why: GM includes in its total 516,435 vehicles of the Wuling brand in China. But GM owns only 34 percent of the Chinese company that produces Wuling vehicles, SAIC-GM-Wuling Automobile Co. Automotive News follows industry practice by including sales of only majority-owned subsidiaries in an automaker's global total." Let it be known that I'm not cheering GM's demise or Toyota's rise. Just the facts, ma'am.

  • Redbarchetta Redbarchetta on Jan 24, 2008

    Why are they so determined to hold this stupid title in the position they are in. Trying to over produce without the demand is what has been sending them down the toilet for all these years. They should quickly be scaling down production to meet demand and then slowly working back up to what they once were, making better use of their time and resources and building up a better and smarter organization. If they can't let go of this tired old thinking this company is doomed in the future.

  • Starlightmica Starlightmica on Jan 24, 2008

    I'd say Peter DeLorenzo, as well intentioned as he is, jumped the shark a couple of years back. I still read him every Wednesday, but his relevancy is greatly diminished with the rise of sites such as TTAC with better - and believe it or not - more objective commentary. Links to Businessweek articles from 2005 about Peter DeLorenzo blasting the D2.801 as well as getting consulting jobs from them:

  • Geotpf Geotpf on Jan 24, 2008

    Yeah, if you include Wuling, you have to include Isuzu and Subaru to Toyota's totals. Although Automotive News isn't being exactly accurate. No non-Chinese automaker is majority owner of any car factory in China. They count Cadillacs sold as GMs, even though the factory that makes them is only 49% owned by GM, because Cadillacs elsewhere are sold by a division that is 100% owned by GM. But Wulings are only sold in China, so they don't count them. To be fair, you should throw out all of China. But then Toyota beats GM by a whole bunch, since GM is much stronger than Toyota in China.