By Daniel Hunter

Toyota has reported a 10% rise in profits during its first quarter, thanks to a weak yen and cost cutting measures.

The Japanese car manufacturer, which last week found out it had been overtaken by Volkswagen as the world's largest car maker, posted profits of 646.3bn yen (£3.34bn, $5,2bn), up from 587.7bn in the same period last year.

In a statement, Toyota managing officer Tetsuya Otake said: "Favourable foreign exchange rates and cost reduction efforts were main positive factors, while decreasing vehicle sales and increased expenses to support initiatives for enhancing competitiveness were negative factors."

Toyota benefited from the weakness of the yen and the continued economic recovery in North America, where sales grew more than its other key markets. Sales in Japan fell and Europe was flat.