GM Reclaims the Throne

2011 was a big year for GM (NYSE:GM). The automaker turned in such booming results that the company was able to reclaim its title as the world’s top selling automaker, a claim that it has been trying to regain since it lost it in 2007.  The car manufacturer sold more than 9 million vehicles worldwide in 2011.  The company’s success would be impressive taking into account the down economy, but becomes astonishing when you remember that the company was bailed out by the US government just two years ago.

Since GM’s fall from grace in 2007, Toyota (NYSE:TM) has enjoyed the top spot among auto manufacturers, but production declines resulting from the earthquake in Japan last year as well as flooding in Thailand drops them not just to second place, but to third.  In December Toyota forecast 2011 sales to come in near 7.9 million, well behind Volkswagen AG who sold 8.16 million.

Volkswagen’s top sales and marketing executive, Christian Klingler, called the company’s 2011 numbers “an outstanding result,” but the company’s not content.  Chatanooga, TN news site Nooga.com cites a company news release stating that their goal was to produce 10 million vehicles per year by 2018, which would lead them to surpass GM and Toyota as the top auto maker. One big question: where’s Ford (NYSE:F) in all this?