Volkswagen Group believes it can sell over 10 million vehicles in 2014, with hopes of overtaking Toyota as the world's largest automaker in the process. If VW can do it, it would meet that goal four years earlier than planned. Of course, Toyota isn't sitting still – it also hopes to top the 10 million-car threshold this year and has the advantage of already holding the top spot.
"With rising volume and new models, we will increasingly see positive earnings effects as well," said VW Group CEO Martin Winterkorn during its annual press conference, according to Automotive News. The company is spending huge amounts of money to propel it to the top, investing 84.2 billion euros ($117 billion) through 2018, and according to AN it plans to introduce over 100 new models worldwide among all of its brands by the end of next year.
The German automaker may get an extra boost as the European car industry shows signs of emerging from its yearlong stagnation and China continues to grow. In January, VW Group was up 8.5 percent in Europe and 15.5 percent in China, according to its own figures. However, the US has been slowing with Volkswagen brand sales down 19.04 percent in January and down 13.81 percent in February.
VW Group sold 9.73 million vehicles in 2013, which barely topped General Motors with 9.71 million. That includes the German's heavy truck sales; an earlier report showed that the company had sold 9.5 million light vehicles last year. Toyota predicts it is going to sell 10.32 million cars in 2014, up 4 percent. If either VW or Toyota hits its goals, it would mark the first time ever than any automaker has sold 10 million models in 12 months.
We've reached out to VW for comment and are awaiting a reply. We'll update this post if and when we hear back.