Massive Ignition Switch Recall Weighs Heavy On GM's Profits

It doesn't seem that long ago that General Motors was far and away the largest automaker in the world. In fact it was for the better part of a century. But that was before Toyota started to encroach and a series of damning events began to unfold to drive GM into bankruptcy. Now it's slid down to fourth place.

With the financial statements in for the first half of 2014, GM dropped to the fourth place with gross revenues of $39 billion. That puts the General behind Volkswagen (which reported $68 billion in revenue), Toyota (at $62 billion) and a surprise upsurge from Daimler, which nudged past at $42 billion. GM did, however, just beat out the Renault-Nissan Alliance by $100 million, and came in well ahead of Ford ($37B), Hyundai ($33B), Fiat-Chrysler ($31B), Honda ($29B) and BMW ($26B).

Those numbers, of course, relate to revenues – multiplying sales volume by how much each automaker charges for each vehicle sold. When it comes to the volume of cars produced, GM ranks in third place with 4.92 million units sold in the first six months of 2014, behind Toyota's 5.1 million and VW's 4.97.