Our business story was also strong, leading with our Go Further brand promise and ending the year with over 2 million vehicles sold. Over the course of the year, we returned to investment grade status, leading to our reclaiming of the iconic Blue Oval, and notched our best ever total company and automotive pre-tax operating profit in Q3. We formed a joint venture: Changan Ford Automobile Company and saw sales rise in China by 21%. Meanwhile, the company developed its Better Plan for Europe and produced the 500,000th EcoBoost engine in the Louisville Assembly Plant.
Ford also contributed to making the world a better place in 2012. During the Global Week of Caring, over 10,000 employees in 28 countries on six continents completed 268 community service projects. The Ford Volunteer Corps completed 1350 Projects by 25,000 employee volunteers who spent 115,000 hours, or the equivalent to a $3 million investment around the world. We installed solar panels at our facilities in Cologne, Germany, and closer to home, our Operation Brighter Future .made a $10 million investment for Detroit neighborhoods.
It was a great 2012 for Ford Motor Company and its employees. We look forward to an even better 2013.