Volkswagen AG’s namesake marquee has announced its global deliveries have dropped 4 percent last month, continuing the negative streak and bracing for further damage as the scandal over rigged diesel emissions tests rages on.
The Wolfsburg, Germany-based group has been severely affected by the biggest crisis in its 78-year history after admitting last month it had cheated on diesel emissions tests in the US, and also said up to 11 million autos around the world had the illegal software installed. Now the company, the largest automaker in Europe, has already announced it would recall 8.5 million cars across its various brands on the home continent. Sales at the VW brand, which is at the heart of the scandal, dropped from 534,800 units last year to 513,500 vehicles in September. Last month the total for the entire group was also 1.5 percent lower than last year at 885,300 autos.
VW’s market share continued to slip in places that were hit by the country-wide recessions – such as Russia or Brazil, but also took a dive in the United States were it has been troubled for some time. What was more disconcerting is the market share slip in Europe, where the sales were positive but overall below the market wide growth across the continent. According to the Brussels-based European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association, or ACEA, VW’s deliveries soared 8.3 percent last month and the full market rose 9.8 percent. VW AG sales plunged 44 percent in Brazil, South America’s largest market, and another 26 percent in Russia. The group’s largest market – China – also saw deliveries slide 0.8 percent last month.