Audi wants to sell 1 million cars in 2008
Audi sold more than 426,200 vehicles worldwide from January to May, an increase of 1.5 percent. In the month of May, Audi increased sales to 88,200 vehicles, up an additional 0.8 percent versus the strong prior-year month. The strongest growth drivers were once again the Asia/Pacific and Eastern Europe regions.
“We have set a sales target of one million vehicles for 2008, expecting strong year-on-year growth in the second half of the year”, says Audi Chairman Rupert Stadler. And: “With the sales figures for the first five months, we are already ahead of schedule.”
Audi’s first half of the year is characterized by the A4 model changeover. The market introduction of the A4 Sedan was followed in May by the introduction of the new A4 Avant all across Europe. To keep up with the high volume of orders for its most important model, AUDI AG utilizes the production turntable set up between Ingolstadt and Neckarsulm for the first time. This marks the first time that the sedan has been produced at both German sites. While peak production of the A4 Sedan was achieved last month, production of the A4 Avant will reach full capacity in June.
Board Member for Marketing and Sales Peter Schwarzenbauer: “The A4 Avant is critically important for our sales figures: In Europe alone, where we sell around 70 percent of our vehicles, the Avant accounts for 60 percent of our highest-volume model range.” Although sales growth in Europe was slowed slightly in the first few months of the year by the discontinuation of the previous model, the full availability of the new model generation will provide a significant boost from August on, according to Schwarzenbauer.
“We will achieve the record figure planned for the year as a whole mainly due to our ongoing product initiative. Audi currently has the youngest product range in our industry. We are reaching an increasing number of customers worldwide with these products by means of a comprehensive sales initiative”, Schwarzenbauer continues.
Audi’s growth, which in the second half of the year will be driven primarily by the full availability of new models, received an additional boost in the first few months from strong growth in the Asia/Pacific region, where the brand with the four rings continues to post double-digit growth rates. In the first five months, sales grew to approximately 65,000 vehicles (2007: 53,879), an increase of 20.6 percent. In the month of May, Audi sold 12,600 cars in the region (2007: 10,312), 22.3 percent more than in the prior-year month.
China (including Hong Kong), Audi’s largest foreign market, achieved growth of 26 percent in May: 9,727 customers there bought an Audi (2007: 7,717). The figure for January to May was 50,180 customers, 23.4 percent more than in the corresponding prior-year period (2007: 40,678).
The brand also grew in Japan contrary to the general trend: While the overall market for imported vehicles continued to shrink strongly in May as it has all year, Audi sold 1,219 cars, 2.7 percent more than in 2007 (2007: 1,187). The brand sold 6,189 vehicles in the first five months, an increase of 8.1 percent (2007: 5,725). Audi also continues to grow in Down Under, with sales of 4,197 vehicles in Australia in the first five months, up 33.4 percent, with the 824 vehicles sold in May representing an increase of 34.9 percent (2007: 611).
In Eastern Europe, the brand with the four rings grew sales from January to May by 13.5 percent to more than 18,300 vehicles (2007: 16,156); sales increased in May by 8.6 percent to around 3,550 cars (2007: 3,275). In the growing Russian market, Audi posted a 21.3 percent increase to 6,992 cars in the first five months (2007: 5,766) and a 9.2 percent increase to 1,482 cars in May (2007: 1,357). The strongest European export market for Audi was the United Kingdom: The brand with the four rings sold 49,495 cars there in the first five months, 4.9 percent more than in the corresponding prior-year period (2007: 47,187). In May Audi increased its sales by 8.3 percent to 9,178 units (2007: 8.476).