World’s Largest Automakers September 2022: What we see is what we’ll get

Once this year is over, the ranking on the World’s Largest Automaker leaderboard most likely will be the same as what you are seeing above: #1 Toyota Group , #2 Volkswagen Group, #3 Hyundai Group. With the September results on the books, the huge differences between the three contestants make a change on the podium unlikely.

By the end of September, Volkswagen Group was 1.7 million units behind #1 Toyota Group. Hyundai Group was nearly a million units behind Volkswagen. The Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance trails 1.3 million units behind Hyundai. Once the 2022 winners have been announced, the Dailykanban most likely will stop showing the results of the fraught French/Japanese alliance.

9 months into the year, global total YTD industry volume stood 1.9% below last year’s level. Not all contestants managed the global motor-malaise the same way. Volkswagen, down nearly 13%, and the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance, down a whopping 20%, cannot blame COVID, chips, and shooting wars for all their weaknesses. Toyota’s global sales were down a slight 2.6%, but its global YTD production rose 5.8%. Hyundai Group even managed a slight gain in YTD global sales.

Toyota said that its annual vehicle production will likely come in below 9.7 million units, but that’s for the April 2022 to March 2023 fiscal.  With any luck, Toyota could remain above 10 million units for the current calendar year.

And now for the usual disclaimer:  Daily Kanban ranks world’s largest automakers by sales, as reported by the automaker. We used to determine the largest automaker in the world by looking at production, because this was how the global automaker umbrella association OICA had done it in the past. OICA seems to have thrown-in the towel, and you no longer will find any recent auto manufacturer rankings on the previously authoritative OICA website, neither by production, nor by sales. Reliable production data are harder and harder to come by, forcing us to switch to sales/delivery data published by automakers. Be aware that “deliveries” can be a rather elastic term. Deliveries can be sales to end users, or cars dumped on dealer lots, or cars “delivered” to sales organizations, or combinations thereof.

Also, please note that Mitsubishi Motors does not publish global sales, only domestic sales in Japan. For that reason, we are forced to use Mitsubishi’s published global production data as a proxy. Speaking of the Alliance, their number reporting is not allied at all, and a common picture requires considerable Excel machinations. Nissan and Mitsubishi report sales and production, Renault only reports deliveries. Mitsubishi does not report global sales, Nissan does. To make the confusion complete, Nissan sometimes reports sales for the April-to-March fiscal year, and sometimes for the calendar year.

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