The results are in, folks. The major automotive groups battling for the title of the biggest automaker in the world have all announced their sales statistics for 2018.

So, what happened last year? Well, as usual, things are a little complicated (as they are with the premium sales battle)…

You see, Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi’s various brands sold a combined total of 10 756 875 units over the 12 months, representing an increase of 1,4 percent, year on year. The Alliance thus claimed it “maintained its position as the world leader in volume sales of passenger and light commercial vehicles”.

And that’s technically true. But earlier in January the Volkswagen Group reported total sales of 10 834 000 units, up 0,9 percent. This, however, includes Man (136 500) and Scania (96 500) heavy truck sales. If these two are removed from the equation, the VW Group’s passenger and light commercial sales total 10 601 000 units, putting the German firm in second place.

And Toyota Motor Corporation? Well, the Japanese firm reported sales of 10 594 000 for 2018, a year-on-year increase of some 2,0 percent. While this figure obviously includes the Lexus and Daihatsu brands, it also takes into account Toyota’s Hino heavy trucks division (204 000). Removing the latter from the calculation puts Toyota in third place at 10 390 000 passenger and light commercial sales for the year (although as a single brand, it's the largest).

Drilling down into the Alliance’s figures, we see Groupe Renault (including the likes of Renault, Dacia, Lada and Alpine) accounted for 3 884 295 units, while Nissan managed 5 653 683 units. Mitsubishi, meanwhile, ended up on 1 218 897 units worldwide, up 18,3 percent.

The VW Group’s biggest total predictably came from Volkswagen (6 244 900), with Audi (1 812 500), Škoda (1 253 700) and Seat (517 600) next in line. VW’s commercial division added 499 700 units, while Porsche accounted for 256 300 sales.