Volkswagen Loses Sales Crown to Toyota and It's Not Really Down to Dieselgate

Toyota Prius 1 photo
Photo: S. Baldauf/SB-Medien
Following the outbreak of Dieselgate, everybody was wondering when Volkswagen was going to lose its top global sales spot. It appears we now have an answer, and it's not quite what we were expecting.
After most major car manufacturers reported their sales figures for the first three quarters of the year, it has been reported that Toyota has bounced back to first place after a short stint by Volkswagen throughout the first six months.

According to the numbers published by the two carmakers, Toyota sold 7.49 million cars during the first nine months of 2015, while Volkswagen stopped at 7.43 million. However, both companies registered a 1.5 percent decline in deliveries.

The important thing to notice here is that the period accounted for only includes less than two weeks of sales after the outburst of the Volkswagen diesel scandal. Basically, that means that these numbers are largely unaffected by the whole cheating device scheme, which should spell even bigger worries for the Germans.

Instead, the dipping deliveries could be blamed on the slowing demand in China, which has been Volkswagen’s largest market lately. There, the Volkswagen brand dropped 7.4 percent in the first three quarters.

The third main contestant, General Motors Co., also registered lower sales figures, going down by 1.9 percent to a total of 7.2 million vehicles in the first nine months of 2015.

Volkswagen is actually lucky it relies heavily on the Chinese market, a place where the Dieselgate scandal should have less severe repercussions than in Europe or the US. Even so, with only 230k cars separating the German brand from its third placed competitor, it’s not unimaginable that the Volkswagen Group might soon fall even further down in the world sales rankings. After all, the Dieselgate ripples are just beginning to show in the company’s numbers.

Toyota, on the other hand, is getting ready to begin sales of its new Prius, a car that has been in development for quite some time and promises to be a very important presence on the hybrid markets throughout the world.
If you liked the article, please follow us:  Google News icon Google News Youtube Instagram
About the author: Vlad Mitrache
Vlad Mitrache profile photo

"Boy meets car, boy loves car, boy gets journalism degree and starts job writing and editing at a car magazine" - 5/5. (Vlad Mitrache if he was a movie)
Full profile


Would you like AUTOEVOLUTION to send you notifications?

You will only receive our top stories