For the month of January, the worldwide deliveries of Volkswagen's core VW brand rose by 0.1% to 419,200 vehicles. Sales were dampened by the economic problems that had affected western Europe and by an early new year holiday in China. In a statement last Tuesday, Christian Klingler, VW board member for sales and marketing, said that the Volkswagen passenger cars brand is stable as it starts the year.
He said that even if the conditions are volatile, specifically in Europe, it was able to maintain the deliveries “at last year's high level.” In January, the brand sold 159,900 cars in January in China, VW's biggest single market.
This is lower by 9% compared to the previous year. This is partly caused by an earlier-than-usual Chinese New Year festival. In western Europe, its sales dropped by 3% to 69,100 units as the region was plagued by persistent problems related to the sovereign debt crisis that further deteriorated consumer confidence.
In Germany, VW's domestic market (also its largest single European market), sales fell 8% to 39,600. In the U.S., January sales of VW-brand cars increased by 48% to 27,200, improved by the local output of VW's new Passat model.
The emerging-market sales continued to strongly increase for the brand with sales in Russia more than doubling by 118% to 9,300 cars and by 42% in India to 5,800 units. VW seeks to surpass General Motors and be the top-selling automaker in the world by 2018. In 2011, VW Group sold 8.16 million units, falling behind GM with 9.05 million. However, the VW brand is ahead of No. 3 Toyota with 7.95 million.