Holy Moses! Even Brazil Beats USA!
Brazil beats America! Over at well-known Brazilian communications giant Globo, they are reporting that little ole Brazil has overcome big ole USA in car production and has taken 5th place worldwide. Can this be true? It depends on how you look at the numbers…
With a total production of 2,576,628 passenger cars in 2009, Brazil took the #5 rank, leaving the US (which produced 2,249,061) in the #6 slot. America’s weak number can be blamed on the crisis, its dependence on truck and SUV sales, and the fact that a lot of the “American” cars are made in Mexico or Canada. Most of all, the crummy showing can be blamed on the fact that these are production statistics. A country that imports a lot looks bad on that list. Countries like Japan, Germany, or South Korea, which had an anemic home market, but export a lot, look better on the list than back home. Trucks, SUVs and minivans count in most countries as “commercial” vehicles. The U.S.A. had to invent the “light vehicle” category to avoid looking like a third world country.
According to Anfavea (the Brazilian car makers association) this production number, though record, is just the beginning. Brazil already is the world’s 4th largest consumer of cars. There are a lot of people in Brazil without cars. There is a lot of room to grow.
Some numbers for your perusing pleasure. (All as per OICA – International Organization of Motor Vehicle Manufacturers – they can be sorted by clicking the column header.)
Total production of passenger cars in 20091 –China10.383.8312 –Japan6.862.1613 –Germany4.964.5234 –South Korea3.158.4175 –Brazil2.576.6286 –USA2.249.061
Total production of “commercial” vehicles in 2009:1 –USA3.462.7622 –China3.407.1633 –Japan1.072.3554 –Canada667.2885 –Thailand663.0556 –Mexico617.8217 –Brazil605.989
Combined production number of motor vehicles in 2009:1 –China13.790.9942 –Japan7.934.5163 –USA5.711.8234 –Germany5.209.8575 –South Korea3.512.9266 –Brazil3.182.617
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