Volkswagen Europe quarterly market share hits five-year low

epa05014261 New Volkswagen vehicles in a carpark in Fallersleben near Wolfsburg, Germany, 6 November 2015. The scandal around Volkswagen's manipulation of car emissions testing could have economic consequences for Germany and other EU member states, the European Commission warns. The revelations 'could have a negative impact on car sales, manufacturing output and real GDP (gross domestic product) growth in some member states, notably Germany,' the commission writes in its autumn economic forecast.  EPA/JULIAN STRATENSCHULTE



Volkswagen AG’s European first-quarter market share reached a five-year low as auto buyers snubbed the German carmaker’s efforts to resolve its emissions-cheating scandal and turned to models from BMW AG, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV and Daimler AG.
Volkswagen’s brands, including mass-market Skoda and up-market Audi, accounted for 23.4 percent of new registrations in the three months ended March versus 24.4 percent a year earlier, the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association said.
That was Volkswagen’s worst showing for the period since 2011. Industrywide demand in the region rose 5.7 percent to 1.74 million cars in March, the 31st consecutive month of growth, and jumped 8.1 percent in the quarter to 3.93 mn. The German company has struggled to regain customers’ trust after admitting in mid-September to rigging exhaust systems on 11 million diesel-powered cars worldwide to falsely pass official emissions tests. Its biggest-selling brands have also lacked new SUV’s in their lineups, enabling Fiat Chrysler’s Jeep unit, Daimler’s Mercedes-Benz and BMW to gain buyers as the models become more popular.
Premium carmakers are taking a bigger role in Europe’s market by offering “more entry-level products and compact cars that attract customers who were not able to buy their products before,” Arndt Ellinghorst, head of automotive research at Evercore ISI, said by phone. Regarding VW’s market share, “I’m surprised it’s not even lower.”
European sales by the Volkswagen group rose 2.3 percent in March, held back by a 1.6 percent drop at the VW nameplate. In its German home market, the division’s sales dropped 6.3 percent last month while industrywide demand held steady. Group first-quarter registrations in Europe increased 3.5 percent, despite the brand’s 0.5 percent decline.
VW fell as much as 2.2 percent and was trading down 1.7 percent at 110.35 euros in Frankfurt. The manufacturer, which also makes heavy trucks and buses, said separately on Friday that global first-quarter deliveries rose 0.8 percent to 2.51 million vehicles, held back by a 1.3 percent slide at the VW car brand, the only division to post a decline.

Leave a Reply

Send this to a friend