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Volkswagen sees massive US sales drop in November

Golf, Jetta, and Passat sales plummet

Volkswagen's diesel scandal problems are hitting the company's bottom line — hard. It's not just the massive fines and expensive repairs that we know are coming: people really like Volkswagen's diesel cars. And now, because none of the offending diesel-powered vehicles can be sold until they're fixed, they can't buy them. That means Volkswagen is selling way fewer cars.

Last month, VW's US sales were off nearly 25 percent from November last year, with the standard Golf (-64 percent), Jetta (-23 percent), Beetle (-39 percent), and Passat (-60 percent) making up the majority of the losses. All in, VW sold 23,883 cars in the US last month, versus 31,725 last November.

According to Kelley Blue Book analyst Karl Brauer, Volkswagen's diesel models have accounted for "between 22 and 25 percent [of sales] during any give month over the last few years." So, with a stop-sale order on the diesels followed by a 25 percent drop in sales, it's pretty easy to see what happened.

There were a few bright spots. The Tiguan, which doesn't even have a diesel variant (weirdly), is heavily incentivized and sales were up nearly 90 percent year over year, and new models like the Golf R and e-Golf (VW's only electric car) bumped sales a little bit. Other than that, though, it's mostly bad news for the Germans.

It's mostly bad news

Though October 2015 (which started just after the scandal broke), saw a slight year-over-year rise in overall US sales, that was on the back of significant incentives on VW's non-diesel cars like the Tiguan and Golf GTI. The company's bread and butter, the Golf, Jetta and Beetle, all saw big drops. And then it got worse this month. VW is getting hammered.

Not every company is having so much trouble. November was Volvo's best month in history, and the company saw US sales jump 90 percent from 2014 on the back of the fantastic new XC90 SUV.

Update December 1st, 2:45PM: Updated with quote from Kelley Blue Book analyst.