General Motors lost the global sales crown once again to Toyota in 2012, as its sales grew just 2.9 percent to 9.2 million vehicles, the US auto giant said Monday.

The American automaker, which briefly regained the crown after Toyota's supplies were shattered by the 2011 Japanese quake and tsunami, nonetheless remains at number two worldwide.

German rival Volkswagen, which aspires to be the world's biggest automaker by 2018, on Sunday reported an 11 percent increase in 2012 sales to 9.07 million.

Toyota has forecast its 2012 sales will jump 22 percent to 9.7 million vehicles. - Sapa-AFP