Volkswagen Defies German Gravity

Bertel Schmitt
by Bertel Schmitt

At home, the market is down 27 percent. Cars? Who wants them. “What, me worry?” is the mantra from Wolfsburg. Volkswagen’s worldwide group deliveries for the first eight months of the current year totaled 4.70m units, up 13.4 percent. In August alone, deliveries rose by 11.2 percent to 545,500. “As a result, the Group outperformed the global automotive market, not only for the month of August but also for the year so far,” declares a proud communiqué from Wolfsburg.

Volkswagen is exporting itself out of the crisis at home. And they are keeping busy. “This year alone we are bringing over 70 new models to market,” said VW sales chief Christian Klingler. Seventy.

In the first eight months of this year …

  • Deliveries in China rose by 41.0 percent to 1.29m units.
  • In India, the number of vehicles sold more than doubled to 26,000.
  • In the USA, deliveries increased by 22.1 percent to 239,300 units.
  • In Europe Volkswagen bucked the trend and posted slight (1.4 percent) growth.
  • In Russia, VW is back in the saddle with 79,800 deliveries, up 21.9 percent.

Amongst VW’s panoply of brands …

  • The Volkswagen Passenger Cars brand delivered a total of 2.98m units during the first eight months, +13.4 percent.
  • Audi delivered a total of 726,600 (+17.9 percent) vehicles worldwide from January to August.
  • The Škoda brand delivered 493,200 (+13.2 percent) vehicles worldwide during the first eight months of the year.
  • Even SEAT shows sign of life: 231,100 (+1.1 percent) vehicles sold worldwide from January to August. And an amazing 26.5 percent rise at home in Spain.
  • Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles grew deliveries by 14.8 percent to 269,800.
  • The Bugattis, Bentleys, Lamborghinis remained unmentioned. Toys for boys.

Join the conversation
3 of 4 comments
  • Willman Willman on Sep 11, 2010

    And here I thought nothing could defy 'German Gravity'. When every other Berliner you meet casually shoots off quotes like, "Ze human existence ist vizzout meaningk. Ve are born, ve do nozzink, and zen vee die, havink no effekt on ze uniwerse vahtsoevah. Nott even Got himzelf notices our futile ekzistence. -By ze vay, Got also is dead, you know. Now; look eento ze abyss unt tell me vaht you see..." -in the course of a routine afternoon kaffee and a smoke, I pretty much figured nothing could defy it. :P

  • Dr Strangelove Dr Strangelove on Sep 11, 2010

    Aah, Berlin, ze vorld capital of bad taste ... by ze vay vat you vere smoking didn't help eizer?

    • Dr Strangelove Dr Strangelove on Sep 11, 2010

      ... Berlin, bad taste: nowhere else have I seen such dreadful hairdos and attire. However, in the context of this story, may we should call Berlin the centre of gravity.

  • Alan I would think Ford would beef up the drive line considering the torque increase, horse power isn't a factor here. I looked at a Harrop supercharger for my vehicle. Harrop offered two stages of performance. The first was a paltry 100hp to the wheels (12 000AUD)and the second was 250hp to the wheels ($20 000 (engine didn't rev harder so torque was significantly increased)). The Stage One had no drive line changes, but the Stage Two had drive line modifications. My vehicle weighs roughly the same as a full size pickup and the 400'ish hp I have is sufficient, I had little use for another 100 let alone 250hp. I couldn't see much difference in the actual supercharger setup other than a ratio change for the drive of the supercharger, so that extra $8 000 went into the drive line.
  • ToolGuy Question: F-150 FP700 ( Bronze or Black) supercharger kit is legal in 50 states, while the Mustang supercharger kit is banned in California -- why??
  • ToolGuy Last picture: Labeling the accelerator as "play" and the brake pedal as "pause" might be cute, but it feels wrong. It feels wrong because it is wrong, and it is wrong because Calculus.Sidebar: I have some in-laws who engage the accelerator and brake on a binary on/off all-in basis. So annoying as a passenger.Drive smoothly out there. 🙂
  • Johnny ringo It's an interesting vehicle, I'd like to see VW offer the two row Buzz in the states also.
  • Chuck Norton And guys are having wide spread issues with the 10 speed transmission with the HP numbers out of the factory......