• Toyota Ends GM’s 90-Year Sales Dominance In The United States

America’s best-selling automaker is not anymore a domestic brand

For the past 90 years, General Motors has been the country’s best-selling automaker as a whole, but this was brought to an abrupt end not by another domestic automaker, but by a foreign brand. Who else could achieve that feat? That would be none other than Toyota.

GM’s 90-year streak was ended due to multiple factors, chief of which was the ongoing global chip shortage. Toyota, on the other hand, was not as severely affected.

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For the first time in nearly a century, a foreign automaker has ended a domestic automaker in terms of sales.

After a massive earthquake and tsunami devastated Japan in 2011, Toyota learned to stockpile and manage its inventories better in order to whether out any manufacturing disruptions. As a result, Toyota (including Lexus) sold a total of 2,332,262 vehicles in the United States, which represents a 10 percent increase from 2020.

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GM’s biggest challenge for 2021 was and still is the ongoing chip shortage, which lead to its sales to decline by 13 percent this year.

On the other hand, GM’s brands sold a total of 2,218,228 vehicles, which is down 13 percent from 2020. As a matter of fact, the effects of the chip shortage on the American automaker were much more severe by the fourth quarter of 2021 as sales have declined by 43 percent.

GM spokesman Jim Cain said to Reuters that the company focused on profitability this year instead of volume due to the chip shortage. Cain says that 2021 was still a strong year in sales for GM’s full-size SUVs and pickups, and as chip supplies improve, so will sales.

"I wouldn't rush out if I were (Toyota), and get a 'We're No. 1' tattoo," GM spokesman Jim Cain says.
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Toyota’s best-selling vehicle continues to be the RAV4, followed by the Camry and then the Corolla.

Toyota’s best-selling vehicle is the RAV4, which actually saw its sales decline by 5 percent compared to 2020’s figures. However, the Camry, Corolla, Highlander, and numerous other models were higher than last year.

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On the other hand, sales of GM’s highly-popular Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra full-size pickups were down compared to last year. Its rival to the Toyota RAV4, the Chevrolet Equinox, is down by a whopping 39 percent compared to 2020 figures.

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Swipe up to know more about this momentous achievement for the Japanese manufacturer

Toyota is also happy to highlight that it continues to be the leader in electrified vehicle sales for the past 22 years. Electrified means the entire cluster of hybrids, plug-in hybrids, and hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles, in which 583,697 were sold last year. Do note that Toyota does not yet have a fully electric vehicle (EV) currently on sale, as the bZ4X is yet to be released this year.

Isaac Atienza
Isaac Atienza is a Filipino motoring journalist who joined TopSpeed.com in 2021. He is a car enthusiast who especially thinks that wagons are the best type of vehicle, though sports cars and anything with three pedals also tickles his fancy.  Read full bio
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