Friday, April 07, 2006

Volkswagen Announces Worldwide Sales Record in First Quarter

Text from Volkswagen AG.
Almost 800,000 vehicles delivered in three months

WOLFSBURG, Germany - The Volkswagen brand achieved worldwide record sales in the first quarter of 2006. 795,000 vehicles were delivered to customers during the first three months of the year.

This is the highest start-of-year figure in the history of the company and represents a rise of some 108,000 vehicles or 15.7 percent compared with the prior-year period. Dr. Michael Kern, Board Member for Sales and Marketing at the Volkswagen Passenger Cars brand, said: “Our new products are now realizing their full potential on the markets. Additionally, improvements in sales structures independent of the models themselves are having an effect.”

In March alone, Volkswagen Passenger Cars sold 330,000 vehicles to customers worldwide. This represents a rise of 16.3 percent compared with the same month in 2005. During the first three months of this year, a total of 795,000 vehicles were delivered to customers worldwide, 15.7 percent higher than the first quarter of 2005. According to Kern: “The Passat has made an impressive mark on the market. And there will be other models to follow this year, first and foremost the Eos, which will be launched on the German market in May.”

Volkswagen achieved noticeable growth in all regions during the first quarter. Growth was strongest in China, where deliveries increased by 32.2 percent to 144,800 vehicles, and the USA, where sales totaled 53,300 units (plus 24.3 percent). In South Africa, sales rose by 22.8 percent to 19,600 units, while sales in South America rose by 10.1 percent to 108,700 vehicles.

Volkswagen Passenger Cars also reported a noticeable increase in Western and Central Europe (excluding Germany), where deliveries to customers rose by 15.3 percent to 259,000 units. In Germany, 125,200 customers opted for a Volkswagen during the first three months of the year, 8.9 percent more than during the prior-year period. In March alone, 52,800 new Volkswagen were delivered to customers in Germany, 9.8 percent up on March 2005. Kern commented: “As a result, our market share has risen to over 19 percent and we have significantly extended our leading position compared with last year.”

The Golf was the main motor for the delivery record. 288,000 customers chose the Golf, Golf Plus, Golf Variant and Jetta, 11 percent up on the prior-year period. The Passat, both the saloon and estate versions, was the second largest contributor, with a total of 140,000 units delivered to customers during the first quarter of the year.

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