TOKYO – Embattled German carmaker Volkswagen has suffered sales declines in some of its key markets in Asia amid an emissions-rigging scandal.
The number of newly registered Volkswagen vehicles in Korea for the month of October plummeted nearly 70 percent from September registrations, according to data from the Korea Automobile Importers and Distributors Association.
The total figure came to 947, about one-third of the registrations made the month before. New registrations for Audi, one of Volkswagen Group’s high-end passenger car brands, also lost about 900 units to 2,482. Audi did, however, place third in terms of new registrations.
The declines come after official concessions from Volkswagen that it fitted its diesel cars with a software device for manipulating emissions in U.S. tests. Car industries worldwide are reeling in the aftermath, including those in Asia where Volkswagen has enjoyed a lofty status.
Meanwhile, recent figures showed Japanese auto giant Toyota beating Volkswagen in global car sales.
During the first nine months of the year, Toyota said it sold 7.5 million cars compared with Volkswagen’s 7.43 million.
Toyota outsold the German carmaker in each month of the third quarter. In third place was General Motors, which reported selling 7.2 million cars.
In Seoul, Volkswagen’s Tiguan 2.0 TDI Blue Motion, which had been Korea’s best-selling foreign car in September, fell to below 10th place. Audi’s A6 35 TDI tumbled two notches to fourth place.
Peugeot’s compact SUV 2008 1.6e-HDi, the Lexus ES300h and the Mercedes Benz E220 BlueTEC took the top three spots, respectively.
In October, import car sales in Korea declined in general, falling about 14.5 percent compared to the previous month. But sales accumulated up to that month rose more than 20 percent on-year, the association figures showed.