By on March 10, 2011

Volkswagen looks back at its best year in history. At a press conference today, Volkswagen CEO  Martin Winterkorn announced a consolidated group profit before tax of €9 billion ($12.45 billion). €1.9 billion ($2.6 billion) of that is Volkswagen’s share out of their China businesses.

“Volkswagen again extended its leading position in China, growing by 37.4 percent to nearly 2 million vehicles,” says a press release from Wolfsburg. Volkswagen’s global market share stands at 11.4 percent now.

Emboldened by the good news, Volkswagen reiterates its “Strategy 2018”- with slight changes.

Instead of becoming the number one automaker and unseating the moving target Toyota, Volkswagen now aims at “unit sales to more than 10 million vehicles by 2018 and to lift the Group’s profit before tax to over 8 percent.”

You don’t say.

Just yesterday, Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda said he is aiming also at 10 million units, however by 2015, three years before Volkswagen.

In the meantime, General Motors, also powered by China, is likely to unseat Toyota this year as the world’s largest automaker.

With cash reserves approaching those of Libya (net liquidity in Volkswagen’s automotive division stands at $25 billion), Volkswagen goes well equipped into a race that will entertain us for years to come. And they don’t waste any time. In the first two months of 2011, Volkswagen delivered  approximately 1.2 million vehicles worldwide, up 17.5 percent.

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