Audi Reports Sales Increase For 2008
The Wall Street Journal (1/9, B3, Rauwald) reports, "In a rare bright spot among automakers, Audi AG Thursday said sales rose 4.1 percent in 2008 and were up 17 percent in December, powered by its new Q5 small sport-utility vehicle and the new generation of its A4 series." The news about "the performance of Audi...comes at a time when automakers around the globe are slashing production as demand for new cars in major markets such as the US, Western Europe, and Japan remains woeful." The Journal notes, "Audi has been increasing sales in recent years by revamping core models like its best-selling A4 and the TT with sleek looks and better technology while also extending its model lineup to include sport-utility vehicles and sports cars like the R8." In 2008, "Audi narrowed the gap with its two larger German rivals, partly because it is relatively less exposed to the eroding US market."
"On the year, the company saw increased demand in Europe and Asia. But the effects of the global financial crisis were keenly felt in the United States where 2008 saw an overall 6.1 percent drop in sales on the year, including nearly 10 percent in December to only 7,712 vehicles," the AP (1/8) added. "Audi AG said Thursday it sold a record of more than 1 million vehicles globally in 2008."