Thanks to strong sales of the RAV4, Highlander and 4Runner.
Despite the challenges brought by the pandemic, Toyota overtook VW last year to become the world's best-selling automaker, with 9.53 million vehicles sold last year across the Toyota and Lexus brands. Continuing this sales momentum, Toyota started 2021 strongly with January sales up by around five percent.
Since then, Toyota's sales have spiked significantly as the Japanese automaker continues its recovery. The Japanese automaker has announced it shipped 859,448 vehicles worldwide in April 2021, a record high for the month and a 103 percent increase over April 2020.
In the US, Toyota's April sales were up by a whopping 188.5 percent compared to the same period last year, with 272,000 units sold. Toyota attributes this substantial increase to strong sales of light trucks such as RAV4, Highlander and 4Runner, as well as the popularity of hybrid models like the RAV4 Hybrid, RAV4 Prime, and Venza and last April's drop in sales caused by the pandemic.
In China, Toyota sold 160,000 units last month, a year-on-year increase of 12.2 percent thanks to strong sales of the Avalon, Camry, RAV4, and Wildlander. Strong sales of the Harrier SUV and Yaris hatchback also increased Toyota's April 2021 sales by 27.1 percent, with 124,000 units sold. If Toyota can sustain this growth, 2021 should easily eclipse 2020's total sales figures.
Between January and April 2021, Toyota sold 3,014,557 cars, an increase of 27.8 compared to Q1 2020. In the same period, 3,014,557 Toyota cars were put into production, which is impressive given that the global computer chip shortage is still disrupting the auto industry and causing factory shutdowns.
In April, global sales of Toyota's electrified cars increased by 171.2 percent to 223,126 units, and this number will no doubt increase when Toyota's first fully electric car, the production version of the bZ4X concept goes on sale in 2022.