Last September we told you of Volkswagen's
plan to overtake Toyota
in global sales by 2015. Some Autoblog staffers giggled at the prospect. That was before Toyota
reported a 39% drop in profit
and began writing down leases
, and long before today's news of the Japanese automaker reducing its sales goal for 2009
by almost 7%. Instead of the 10.4 million vehicle sales it predicted for 2009, Toyota says it now may only sell 9.7 million.
While 7% may not sound like a big reduction, consider that Toyota has seen steady growth since its founding in 1934, and any drop is a big deal. Last month, Toyota reported an 18% drop in sales from last July, while VW
posted a 4% drop. If those sales rates continue, VW's goal of total domination should be much easier to attain.