Renault-Nissan sales close to 10 million in 2016

RENAULT-NISSAN said yesterday it sold nearly 10 million vehicles worldwide.

The company, which has aspirations to become one of the world's top three carmakers behind Volkswagen and Toyota, said in statement that unit sales jumped by nearly 17% to 9.96 million vehicles last year. German giant Volkswagen is the world's biggest in terms of units sales, with 10.3 million vehicles sold last year. Japanese rival Toyota sold 10.18 million vehicles, while US giant General Motors has yet to publish its 2016 sales figures.

Renault-Nissan said the strong rise in overall sales came despite the disappointing performance of Mitsubishi, the Japanese unit that was added to the group last year when Nissan took a 34% stake.

Overall, Renault-Nissan's sales accounted for about one in nine of the cars sold in the world last year. The Nissan arm said solid demand in China and the United States helped it to sell 5.6 million vehicles in 2016, a 2.5% increase.

For its part, Renault said earlier this month it had benefited from buoyant markets in Europe, India and – increasingly as it opens up its markets to the West – Iran. It saw a 13% surge in sales.

Renault-Nissan also boasts of being the world leader in electric cars with nearly 425,000 sold last year, led by the Nissan Leaf model.