CHICAGO -- Toyota (IW 1000/8) and Chrysler outpacing their rivals with double-digit gains as Ford (IW 500/6) and General Motors (IW 500/4) posted modest growth on Thursday.

Ford estimated that total 2012 sales would come in at about 14.8 million vehicles when all automakers have reported, about a 14% gain from a year earlier.

It forecast that 2013 sales would rise to between 15 and 16 million vehicles in the United States, while global sales would come in between 80 and 85 million units.

Ford reported its best December sales since 2006, though they grew just 2% from the same month a year earlier to 214,222 vehicles.

The number two US automaker's 2012 sales rose 5% from 2011 to nearly 2.3 million vehicles on the strength of the Ford brand, which was the only nameplate to top 2 million in annual U.S. sales.

"Ford finished 2012 strong, with retail sales showing improved strength as more customers returned to dealer showrooms," said Ken Czubay, head of Ford sales.

"Ford's fuel-efficient cars and hybrid vehicles showed the most dramatic growth for the year, and we achieved our best year for commercial vehicle sales since 2008."

Ford's domination of the truck market helped boost sales as its popular F-Series pickup marked 31 consecutive years as America's best-selling vehicle with 645,316 units sold, a 10% gain from 2011.