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Despite weathering a rocky 2010 marked by repeated recalls, Toyota managed to remain the world's largest automaker last year. According to Bloomberg, the Japanese manufacturer saw its sales rise by eight percent to 8.42 million units if you include Lexus, Hino and Daihatsu. That figure beat out General Motors, which saw its sales increase by 12 percent with 8.39 million units sold.

While Toyota's sales in the U.S. market dropped by 0.4 percent due to safety concerns, the automaker saw large increases in China. The company's sales in the People's Republic jumped by 19 percent, though General Motors saw its Chinese sales increase by 29 percent.

Volkswagen, meanwhile, managed to move 7.14 million vehicles during 2010, cementing its place as the third-largest automaker in the world. That figure marks a 14 percent increase over 2009, and VW says that it fully expects to see sales increase by five percent in 2011.

Toyota is forecasting its sales to hit 8.6 million vehicles in 2011.

[Source: Bloomberg | Image: Ralph Orlowski/Getty Images]