VW European sales growth screeches to near-halt

AP News
Posted: Dec 15, 2015 6:36 AM

MILAN (AP) — Volkswagen sales growth in Europe screeched to a near-halt in November compared with both its mass-market and premium competitors as the German carmaker was penalized for its involvement in a diesel emissions-cheating scandal.

Sales of the core Volkswagen brand grew in November by just 2.8 percent, compared with nearly 14 percent for the industry as a whole, according to statistics released Tuesday by Europe's carmakers association ACEA.

The Volkswagen group, which includes a range of brands from Lamborghini to Skoda, saw its market share slide from 26.6 percent in November 2014 to 24.3 percent this year.

Volkswagen has been tainted by a scandal that it tinkered with software to achieve better emissions results in U.S. tests. Last week, it reported global sales were 2.2 percent lower than in November the previous year.

European peers fared much better. Mass-market manufacturers PSA Peugeot, Renault, Ford, Opel and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles all posted double-digit growth. Premium carmaker Daimler saw sales rise 22 percent, while BMW posted a 10 percent increase.

New car registrations topped 1 million for the month, bringing sales so far to 12.6 million units — more than the 2014 total. All major markets contributed, with Italy and Spain posting double-digit growth.