Toyota Motor Corp. group climbed to second place in the 2019 global auto sales rankings on robust demand in North America, overhauling the Nissan Motor Co., Renault SA and Mitsubishi Motors Corp. alliance, data showed Thursday.

Toyota sold a record 10.74 million units globally in 2019, up 1.4 percent from the previous year, to finish behind only Volkswagen AG of Germany.

Sales were steady in North America on the strength of the Japanese automaker's Corolla sedan and RAV4 sport-utility vehicle, together with those in Europe and Asian countries including China where Lexus-brand cars proved popular, it said.

Daihatsu Motor Co. minivehicles and trucks sold by Hino Motors Ltd. are included in Toyota's figure.

Volkswagen took the top spot for the fourth consecutive year with a record-high 10.97 million units sold, up 1.3 percent from the previous year due partly to solid sales in Europe and South America.

Meanwhile, the Nissan, Renault and Mitsubishi alliance posted sales of 10.16 million units, down 5.6 percent. It suffered sluggish sales in the U.S. market following the arrest of the group's former boss Carlos Ghosn in November 2018.

As for Nissan, it struggled in all regions in the world amid a lack of new attractive models, with sales dropping 17.2 percent in Europe and 9.9 percent in the United States, with those in China down 1.1 percent.

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