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News Summary: Toyota rolls despite China slump

The Associated Press

NICE RIDE: Toyota shrugged off weak China sales and held onto to the top spot among automakers for the first half of this year, outpacing General Motors, which boasted such bragging rights for seven decades until 2008.

BUMPER TO BUMPER: Toyota sold 4.91 million cars and trucks around the world for the January-June period, down 1.2 percent from the previous year. GM said this month that it sold 4.85 million vehicles worldwide in the six months, growing almost 4 percent as it gained U.S. sales faster than Toyota. For the second quarter alone, GM had a slight edge, outselling Toyota by about 10,000 vehicles.

ANOTHER KIND OF RIVAL: Toyota's sales in China were hurt by anti-Japanese sentiment that flared over a territorial dispute, setting off boycotts and riots. The deep sales slump that started in the second half of last year has waned in the past few months and Japanese automakers might be poised to start growing there again.