Audi sales decline
AUDI HAS reported that sales of its luxury cars were down 4.2 per cent on the year in December, but said full-year sales still beat its most recent forecast.
The Volkswagen AG unit said it sold 79,300 cars last month.
Over the whole of 2009, it sold 949,700 cars - down from just above one million the previous year, a 5.4 per cent decline.
That was better than Audi's full-year sales forecast of 925,000, which was raised in November from the original figure of 900,000.
"We are making a lively start in 2010 and aim to deliver one million cars again," Chief Executive Rudolf Stadler said in a statement.
Audi said it was helped last year by a 32.9 sales increase in China, where the company shifted nearly 159,000 vehicles. In December, Chinese sales were up 75.6 per cent to more than 19,000.
Full-year sales in the United States were down 5.7 per cent at 82,716, but in December they rose by 17.1 per cent on the year to 9,030.
In Europe, sales were down 12.8 per cent for the full year at 618,850; in December, they dropped a steeper 22.8 per cent to 44,100.
Overall car sales in Germany have been tailing off since a popular government car-scrapping bonus scheme expired in September.