Time Out For Volkswagen

Bertel Schmitt
by Bertel Schmitt
time out for volkswagen

Volkswagen’s double digit growth rates came to a grinding halt in January with the Volkswagen Passenger Cars brand reporting what Volkswagen euphemistically calls “robust delivery figures:” Worldwide, Volkswagen handed over a mere 600 cars more in January 2012 than the 418,600 units it had sold in January 2011, for a teensy rise of 0.1 percent. Basically, Volkswagen is treading water. Why? China.

In the U.S. , Volkswagen Passenger Cars registered a plus of 47.9 percent to 27,200 units. In troubled Europe, Volkswagen sold 0.8 percent more in January to 125,500 units. What rained on the parade was China where the Volkswagen Passenger Car brand registered a decrease of 8.6 percent to 159,900 units . Like all Chinese manufacturers, Volkswagen suffered from the calendar effect that brought the Chinese New Year festival much earlier than last year. Gains elsewhere in the world fell victim to the Chinese January-malaise.

This goes to show how dependent Volkswagen has grown on China, its largest market. Volkswagen shares that fate with GM. GM is looking at an 8 percent loss in China in January. Except that GM also lost 6 percent in the U.S. in January. Europe-wide numbers have not been published yet for January, but Opel lost 9.7 percent in Germany in the month. GM’s global losses in January most likely will remain hidden: GM reports only quarterly on global numbers.

Note that Volkswagen reported for the Passenger Car part only. Volkswagen is expected to announce group data within a few days.

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4 of 6 comments
  • Old Guy Old Guy on Feb 14, 2012

    "Robust" = a word we used instead of what we really meant, "disappointing."

  • Obbop Obbop on Feb 14, 2012

    "According to the Chinese Zodiac, the Year of 2012 is the Year of the Dragon, which begins on January 23, 2012 and ends on February 9, 2013 "... is the ultimate auspicious symbol signifying success and happiness." C'mon everybody. Lets hie over and dwell within China and receive the bounty and blessings assuredly awaiting us.

  • Geozinger Geozinger on Feb 14, 2012

    Hmmmm... No mention of a chart. These figures must be suspect?

  • Zackman Zackman on Feb 14, 2012

    Hmmm...no air conditioning in that VW bus. I'm sure those people had a real pleasant time! Could it even move under its own power?