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China Remains World’s Top Auto Producer, Japan to Decline

by on January 10, 2013

China will remain the world’s top auto producer over the next four years, according to an analysis by WardsAuto and Automotive Compass. Japan, however, is set to decline.

Production in China is set to jump a whopping 7.5 million units through 2016 to a total of 26 million. In 2009, China became the world’s largest auto producer. To this day, it still remains above the U.S., currently the world’s second largest automaker. Production in the U.S. is set to increase by 1.3 million through 2016, the report says.

Japan will remain the world’s third largest car producer but will experience a decline over the next few years. Production will drop by 875,000 units as the rising value of the yen over other worldwide currencies makes it harder to export from Japan. Automakers are instead shifting production to North America, particularly the U.S. and Mexico. Other factors are also likely at play. Political disputes with China over the Senkaku Islands have led to boycotts of Japanese cars in the world’s largest car market. According to Forbes, Japanese automakers held a 30.6 percent market share in China in 2008, but this has dropped to just above 21 percent as tensions have escalated in recent years.

India is expected to take a place among the world’s biggest auto producers by 2016. It will overtake Germany and South Korea for fourth place. Recently, India has pushed ahead of the UK, Canada, Italy, Spain, Mexico, Russia, and other countries in terms of vehicle production. It is one of the fastest growing auto markets, with major automakers including Tata Motors (owner of Jaguar/Land Rover) and Mahindra & Mahindra.

For more information, check out WardsAuto.

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