VW to expand U.S. dealer network image

Volkswagen considers increasing its dealer network in the long term in the United States in order to meet its sales goals.

According to Jonathan Browning, CEO of Volkswagen Group of America, VW plans to boost U.S. annual sales of the Volkswagen brand to 800,000 units by 2018, more than three times the number of cars sold in 2010 (256,830 units).

Browning said VW will surpass 300,000 vehicles in the U.S. this year, with the company aiming for “double digit” sales growth next year. New Volkswagen dealers will be needed if the company is to accomplish its ambitious targets, but Browning doesn’t see major changes in the dealer network over the next two to three years.

“But by 2014-2015 we will have to add dealers across the U.S. to achieve our long-term objectives,” Browning told Automotive News Europe at the Los Angeles Motor Show. Currently, Volkswagen has about 600 dealers in the United States. The CEO confirmed that VW’s U.S. national sales company is on track to be profitable this year for the first time since 2003.

Browning said he expects total industry sales in the U.S. to reach 12.8 million to 12.85 million units this year and 13.5 million to 14 million in 2012.