Diesel scandal reduces VW car sales by 20%

November saw a 20% fall in Volkswagen car sales in the aftermath of the diesel emissions scandal.

Figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) show that 12,958 VWs were registered in November 2015 compared to 16,196 the previous year (1). This comes following the scandal in September where it was discovered that software to cheat emissions tests for nitrogen oxides were installed in 11 million diesel vehicles worldwide. This included almost 1.2 million in the UK (2).

Declines have also been seen in other brands owned by the German carmaker, including SEAT by 24%, Skoda at 11 % and Audi at 4% (3).

VW has replaced its Chief Executive since the emissions scandal broke. It has set aside £4.8bn to compensate for the wrongdoing; however, this figure is expected to increase (3).

Jim Holder, the Editorial Director of magazines Autocar and What Car commented: “There’s a lot of evidence they have lost the trust of the buyers and that is starting to come through. They are going to face several difficult months now while they have to rebuild” (3).

Last month, the scandal deepened further when VW revealed it had found “irregularities” in carbon emissions which may affect another 800,000 vehicles.

Overall, new car registrations grew 3.8% year on year in November to 178,876. This compared with a 1.1% drop in October, which ended 43 months of continual growth in a market that has benefited from purchases helped by cheap finance deals (4).

(1) The Telegraph- ‘Volkswagen UK car sales plunge 20pc in the wake of ‘dieselgate.’ 04.12.2015

(2) ITV News- Volkswagen sales fall by 20% after diesel emissions scandal 04.12.2015

(3) Sky News- VW Car sales down 20% after diesel scandal 04.12.2015

(4) The Guardian- VW sales drop 20% in UK as diesel emissions scandal hits carmaker 04.12.2015