Updated January 3, 2020, 11:46 p.m.
For a long time it seemed as if VW could finally compensate for the sales dip due to the 2019 exhaust scandal. But a weak December intervened. Other German car makers did better.
Volkswagen suffered a major damper on the important US market at the end of the year. In December, only 27,877 cars with the VW logo were sold there – a decrease of 13 percent compared to the same period in the previous year. The company announced on Friday at its US headquarters in Herndon, Virginia. In the year as a whole VW after all, an increase of 2.6 percent to 363,322 cars.
The last good year was five years ago
Nevertheless, it was not possible to sell more new cars than in 2014, the last full year before the exhaust gas scandal was exposed. At that time VW sold almost 367,000 cars in the United States. In December, the important US model Jetta and the SUV Tiguan ran significantly weaker. The popular Atlas off-road vehicle could not save the balance sheet.
The VW subsidiaries Porsche and Audi, on the other hand, shone with strong growth. The sports car manufacturer sold 4,733 cars in December, 15.8 percent more than a year ago. at Audi Sales increased by 14 percent to 25,850 vehicles. For the whole year Porsche Even more ahead with 7.4 percent, Audi only achieved an increase of 0.4 percent in 2019.
Daimler had to cope with a 5.4 percent decline in Mercedes-Benz sales in December to 30,294 vehicles. The core brand stagnated at the previous year’s level over the course of the year. BMW sold 34,357 cars in December, 4.0 percent more than a year ago. Overall, sales increased by 4.4 percent in 2019.
The winner could be Tesla
Other manufacturers had to make significant cuts in December. VW rival Toyota brought a good six percent fewer new cars to US customers. Honda got rid of twelve and Nissan even 30 percent fewer cars. Overall, industry-wide U.S. statistics for 2019 should still be better than many analysts expect given the waning auto economy at the beginning of the year.
The US market leaders General Motors (GM), Ford and Fiat Chrysler only published their sales figures on a quarterly basis. In the three months to the end of December, GM saw a drop in sales of a good six percent year-on-year, while Fiat Chrysler’s loss was two percent. Ford doesn’t want to report until Monday. Tesla achieved sales growth of 23 percent worldwide in the final quarter, and the e-car manufacturer does not present any isolated results for the US market. (Best / Reuters)
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