Wednesday, July 31, 2013
VW Sales Goals in Doubt
Volkswagen has seen U.S. sales drop this year, raising questions among automotive analysts as to whether it remains on track to meet its stated goal of leading global automakers in sales, production and earnings by 2018.
The German automaker took aim at that mark in 2010, amid a fledgling economic recovery in the United States and continued uncertainty in Europe.
Since then, Europe's economy has been buffeted by crises in Greece, Spain, Portugal, Italy and Ireland, and the recovery in the United States has proceeded tepidly.
As such, while the auto industry has largely recovered from the depths of a severe slump that came amid the Great Recession, it's been hard for any automaker to post dramatic enough gains to enable huge leaps up the sales and production charts.
For VW, problems also persist with its perceived quality and reliability.
Recent rankings by J.D. Power and Associates once again placed VW in the below average category in quality.
And though it has seen impressive sales gains from its Jetta small sedan, competition from other brands in that segment, and a reinvigorated truck and crossover SUV segment have meant only limited impact from Jetta's uptick.