Volkswagen Posts Disappointing Sales Drop in August; GTI Outsells Golfs

2015 Volkswagen Jetta US Model 1 photo
Photo: Volkswagen
There's no question buyers were flocking to dealerships towards the end of this summer, with most automakers reporting great sales. However, not everybody has reason to celebrate, as Volkswagen of America actually saw a substantial drop. At the end of last month, deliveries of the German brand totaled only 35,181 units, which represents a 12.8% decline compared to last year's figures.
For the year to date, Volkswagen USA has sold only 244,878 cars, a 13.4% drop compared to the first eight months of 2013. By comparison, American automaker Chrysler reported a huge 20% increase to almost 200,000 sales last month, basically equaling what VW managed for the whole of 2014.

Looking at the numbers on a model-by-model basis, it appears the German brand lacks any strong backbone, with the possible exception of the Jetta. Despite its age, this model still represents well over a third of Volkswagen's total sales. The 2015 Jetta will go on sale this fall, possibly bringing with it a respite for the brand.

The all-new 2015 Golf, on the other hand, didn't manage to leave a dent in the market. August deliveries were up 17%, but they're actually lower than those of the GTI. Not only did the hot hatch outsell the regular car by over 200 units, it also outperformed the Beetle coupe, the CC and matched the Tiguan.

Despite being based on the same platform as the Golf and costing significantly more, the 2015 Audi A3 saw a huge increase in demand last month. This could be a sign that Americans will never pick a hatchback over the sedan, no matter how practical or new.

The Passat sedan delivered 9,190 units for the month, a decline of almost 9%. Meanwhile, the efficient TDI Clean Diesel models accounted for 8,182 units, representing 23.3 percent of sales in August.

It really does seem that until the all-new MQB-based crossovers and SUVs arrive, Volkswagen is stuck being a niche company with declining sales in America.
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About the author: Mihnea Radu
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Mihnea's favorite cars have already been built, the so-called modern classics from the '80s and '90s. He also loves local car culture from all over the world, so don't be surprised to see him getting excited about weird Japanese imports, low-rider VWs out of Germany, replicas from Russia or LS swaps down in Florida.
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