Archive for Sunday, January 8, 2006

GM: Asian, Latin sales boost global dominance

January 8, 2006

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— Despite General Motors Corp.'s problems in its home market, the automaker's worldwide sales were at their highest level in 27 years in 2005 thanks to growth in Asia and Latin America, GM Chairman and CEO Rick Wagoner said.

"Getting outside of the U.S. market we had a good year, on balance, around the world," Wagoner said in a transcript of remarks released Saturday.

Wagoner said preliminary sales figures show GM sold 9.2 million vehicles worldwide. The only other year GM sold more than 9 million vehicles was 1978.

The figure raises the bar for Toyota Motor Corp., which is close to surpassing GM in worldwide sales to become the world's largest automaker. Toyota produced about 8.1 million vehicles in 2005 and has announced plans to build 9.06 million vehicles in 2006.

Wagoner said more than half of GM's sales are now outside the United States, and China is the automaker's second biggest market.

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