The Czech Republic's passenger car output in 2010 rose 9.5 percent to top the million-unit mark for the first time, its auto industry lobby said Wednesday. Production stood at 1,072,263 vehicles in 2010.

"The year 2010 can be considered a milestone in Czech car production," Martin Jahn, president of the Association of Automotive Industries, said in a statement.

"The record-high annual output also confirms a long-term growth trend as passenger car output has been growing annually since 2003," he added.

Skoda Auto, a unit of Germany's Volkswagen, accounted for 53 percent of output, followed by TPCA, a joint-venture of France's PSA Peugeot-Citroen and Japan's Toyota, with 28 percent.

South Korea's Hyundai accounted for 19 percent, the association said.

Skoda Auto said earlier its 2010 global sales rose 11.5 percent to a record 762,600 units,

The car maker, with plants in Ukraine, India, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Kazakhstan, China and Russia, said it was planning to at least double global sales by 2018.

TPCA said its output dropped 11 percent to 295,000 last year, while Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Czech raised output 70 percent to 200,135.

In 2009, Czech-based makers turned out 979,085 passenger cars after bucking the global downturn caused by the economic crisis with a 4.12 percent annual gain in output.

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