Last year, Toyota overtook General Motors as the world’s largest carmaker. The title may change hands again this year, as Volkswagen produced more cars in the first nine months of 2009 than any other automaker.
VW produced a total of 4.4 million vehicles through the first nine months of the year, eclipsing Toyota’s 4.0 million units. Ford fell into third place, with a total of 3.7 million units, and GM dropped to fourth with a total of 3.6 million.
If sales continue this way, VW is well on its way to becoming the largest auto manufacturer, a goal the company hoped to achieve by 2018. The company has been aided by various scrappage schemes across Europe, which bolsterd the company’s sales and production volumes.
Another helpful boost was the launch of the new Golf and Polo hatchbacks. Sales of those two models were up 54 percent and 56 percent, respectively. VW’s Skoda brand has also been a factor -- Octavia sales are up 20 percent, while Fabia sales jumped a staggering 92 percent.