( dpa ) - Japanese automotive giant Toyota came close to unseating General Motors as the world's top car seller in 2007, reporting Monday that its sales reached 9,366,418 vehicles.
The figure - up 6.4 per cent on 2006 sales - came just some 3,000 cars shy of GM's reported sales of 9.37 million cars last year.
Toyota brand cars accounted for 8.4 million of the sales, up 6.4 per cent on 2006, while the rest was accounted for by the trucks subsidiary Hino and the small-car maker Daihatsu.
Last week GM reported its sales of 9.37 million vehicles, with the company remaining - just barely - the world leader for the 77th straight year.
But the GM figure included the 510,000 cars sold under a joint venture in China, in which GM's share is 34 per cent. Excluding those sales, the Japanese agency Kyodo noted, then Toyota last year would have achieved the overall top ranking.