Volkswagen is back in first place in Europe. Measured by the number of new vehicle registrations, the brand has regained first place in 2005. "Volkswagen is a powerful brand. We are now harvesting the rewards of our model offensive", claimed Dr Wolfgang Bernhard, Chairman of the Board of Management of the Volkswagen brand in Wolfsburg. "Our models are exciting customers across Europe. That gives us a tailwind for the year ahead," Bernhard stressed.
Between January and November, the European Automobile Association (ACEA) noted 1.416 million new vehicle registrations for the Volkswagen brand in Europe (EU 23 + EFTA). "That is a lead that the competition will not be able to catch up in the last month of the year," said Bernhard. In November alone, 129,000 vehicles of the brand were registered. That gives Volkswagen a market share of 11.1 per cent in November, some 1.7 percentage points more than the second place.
By far the most successful model in Europe is the Volkswagen Golf. Between January and the end of October, almost 500,000 Golf registrations were recorded. "This year, the Golf has really gained momentum and has left the competition a long way behind," stressed Bernhard. The launch of the Golf Plus has played an important role in this development. "This success shows that our innovative ideas and concepts enable us to expand and grow, even in the highly competitive compact car segment."
The other models launched in 2005 have also quickly become established on the market. Besides the Golf Plus, Volkswagen also launched the new Polo, the new Fox, the new Passat saloon, the new Jetta, the new Beetle and the new Beetle convertible, the new Passat estate and the Golf R32. In addition, Volkswagen presented the new Eos at the International Motor Show in Frankfurt and at the EcoRacer at the Tokyo Motor Show.
"We have a fresh new model range," explained Bernhard. "But this success will not cause us to sit back on our laurels. We have more surprises is store for 2006. We shall prove that Volkswagen is able to produce vehicles that people dream about and to do so at competitive prices. Our heart is in the high-volume segment."
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