By on August 3, 2011


OICA, the international umbrella organization for all automakers, has finally published its 2010 ranking of the world’s largest automakers. TTAC readers are not surprised by the results. They had known the outcome (at least for the top ten) half a year ago.

Top Ten Automakers 2010 As Reported By TTAC And OICA

Rank Name Production Production Deviation Change
2010 2010 TTAC 2010 OICA to 2009
Toyota Group
8,557,351 8,557,351 0 18.3%
General Motors Grp
8,389,769 8,476,192 86,423 31.2%
Volkswagen Group
7,140,000 7,341,065 201,065 21.0%
Hyundai Motor Grp
5,744,018 5,764,918 20,900 24.1%
5,313,000 4,988,031 -324,969 6.5%
4,053,701 3,982,162 -71,539 45.1%
3,643,057 3,643,057 0 20.9%
PSA Group
3,602,200 3,605,524 3,324 18.5%
2,892,945 2,892,945 0 21.2%
2,625,796 2,716,286 90,490 18.3%

Each year, OICA compiles the vital stats of the world’s largest automakers and uses the results for its listing of the Top 47 (this year.) OICA uses production numbers. Appeals from some TTAC readers to use different metrics (sales, profits, transaction cost) continue to fall on deaf ears. At OICA, a Nano counts as much as a Rolls Royce Phantom. One vehicle, one vote. OICA compiles the numbers as reported to them by the national manufacturers associations, which use the numbers reported by the manufacturers. Some manufacturers, notably Iran Khodro and possibly others, are AWOL. They need to report to be recognized.

As far as the ranking goes, the Top Ten came in as predicted by TTAC half a year ago. Major upsets would have been a surprise: We compiled our numbers using official end-of-year statements of the respective manufacturers. Links are in the table. In an ideal world, these numbers should be the same as the ones on the OICA list.

The coveted TTAC Award for Numerical Consistency goes to the Japanese manufacturers, namely Toyota, Honda, and Suzuki. Their OICA numbers are exactly what was reported by each company by year’s end. Japanese companies are the benchmark when it comes to automotive statistics. They consistently report sales and production in a concise format. We appeal to the world’s auto manufacturers to not only study Japanese quality systems, but also to blatantly copy Japan’s table-based reporting system.

Other manufacturers intentionally or unwittingly sow confusion through selective reporting. Differences between the official end of year results and the OICA number are an annual tradition and are noted in the Deviation column.

Nobody is accusing anybody of outright cheating. Japanese makers report sales and production. Non-Japanese automakers initially report only sales according to varying definitions. The Hyundai Motor Group number was calculated by TTAC by adding up Hyundai and Kia. Nissan appears to have lost a little bit of its Nipponese neatness and lost 71,539 cars thought to be produced in 2010. Some of them were found at Renault.

While we are awarding prizes, the TTAC Grand Prize for Gargantous Growth goes to Nissan, which nearly doubled its 2009 production. Nissan is followed by GM with 31 percent growth and Hyundai, which added 24 percent to its prior year production. With a measly 6.5 percent growth, Ford brings up the rear with the lowest growth in its peer group.

More numerical arcana:

  • In 2010, a total of 73.8 million automobiles (all kinds, 4 wheels on up) has been produced around the globe – if OICA is correct.
  • 95 percent of those were made by the world’s Top 47 automakers.
  • 67 percent of the world’s total were made by the world’s ten largest automakers.
  • The number 1 on the list, Toyota, made 100 times more cars than the number 47, Rongcheng Huatai.

Speaking of Huatai: The company that once had expressed interest in Saab made 81,300 cars last year. Saab made 20,000 cars in 2009 and 32,000 in 2010. There is no chance of independent survival on these numbers. Saab’s alleged white knight Youngman isn’t even on the list.

Speaking of China: A lot of the growth of the world’s largest automakers is Made in China. Large automakers would be millions smaller without the Chinese. Automakers usually count the full number of cars made by joint ventures as theirs. This leads to China’s SAIC for instance landing on rank 31 with 346,525 cars made, when in truth more than ten times that number left SAIC’s factory last year as GM and Volkswagen cars.

For the first time, OICA recognizes this fact with a small table that lists the production of five large Chinese automakers including the joint venture cars. As you can see, a SAIC suddenly is as big as Honda, and the relatively obscure Dongfeng gets bigger than Renault – which just happens to be Dongfeng’s joint venture partner, along with Nissan.

The full 2010 OICA table is here as PDF. If you want to perform other acts on the numbers, here they are as an Excel sheet, brought to you as a service by your humbled servants at Thetruthaboutcars.

SAIC Shanghai Auto Industry Corp.
Dongfeng Auto Corp. 2,769,883
FAW First Auto Works 2,572,260
China Chana Automobile Group
Beijing Automotive Industry Group
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