Deliveries of electric VW cars tripled in 2020.
It's safe to say most automakers failed to achieve projected sales targets in 2020, but nobody could have predicted a pandemic would force factories to close around the world.
One surprise exception was Bentley, which miraculously celebrated its best-ever sales year in 2020 with a two percent increase over 2019. Volkswagen has now released its global 2020 sales figures, and it's as you might expect. Last year, Volkswagen delivered around 5.328 million vehicles around the world, a decline of around 15 percent compared to the previous year. US deliveries also fell by 17 percent from 564,800 units in 2019 to 468,400 in 2020.
It's not all bad news, however. After production was ramped up, VW ended the year with strong sales in December, which were down by only two percent compared to the same month in 2019. "Volkswagen showed its strengths in 2020. Despite all of the restrictions in automotive trade caused by the pandemic, we were able to maintain our global market share and even expand it in several regions," said Klaus Zellmer, the board member responsible for Sales of Volkswagen Passenger Cars. "This shows that we have attractive products that excite our customers and a highly motivated dealership organization."
VW's shift to electrification is also off to a strong start. Last year, VW delivered 212,000 electric cars worldwide, an increase of 158 percent compared to 2019, bolstered by the launch of nine new electric and plug-in hybrid models in 2020.
Of these, nearly 134,000 were battery electric vehicles, which were up by 197 percent compared to 2019. VW's Dieselgate woes now seem like a distant memory. In Europe, VW's battery-electric and hybrid vehicles made up 12.4 percent of total deliveries, up from 2.3 percent in 2019.
Despite only going on sale in September, the ID.3 was VW's most popular EV with 56,500 units sold, followed by the e-Golf with around 41,300 units and the Passat GTE with around 24,000 units sold. In December, the ID.3 hatchback was the most delivered BEV in Finland, Slovenia and Norway and Sweden's top-selling car. VW's EV global market share looks set to increase in 2021, too, with the launch of the ID.4, allowing VW to tap into the popular electric SUV market in America for the first time.