problems, brought about by the discussion of punitive tariffs and the conversion to the new WLTP emissions test procedure. Despite these challenges, in 2018 the Volkswagen brand sold 5.7 million vehicles worldwide. That’s 1.2 percent more than the year before. The biggest contributor to this success is the South American market, with Brazil playing the leading role. Since the end of 2017, Volkswagen do Brasil launched eleven new models there, resulting in a 26.7 percent sales increase compared to the year before.
Volkswagen also broadened its commitment in Africa. In Rwanda, the company launched an integrated mobility concept, including local vehicle manufacturing as well as innovative mobility services, and the sales and service center CFAO Volkswagen Rwanda.
The plan calls for the production of approximately 1,000 vehicles per year, with a possibility of ramping up production to 5,000 vehicles. However, at its core, the program is geared toward car sharing and ride hailing services.
GTI and Beetle Fan Meetings
More than 7,000 cars and roughly 125,000 visitors join the GTI meeting at Lake Wörthersee, every year. In May 2018, the fans were treated to a particular sensation, as the Golf GTI TCR concept celebrated its premiere. The racing version puts out 350 hp and already scored two victories in the TCR series. The road version will deliver 290 hp and a top speed of 264 km/h – the fastest GTI of the model range.
The GTI family gained a new member in 2018 with the delivery of the first up! GTI. Its outside and inside dimensions are similar to those of the original GTI from 1976. Low weight and a powerful engine are the hallmark of a GTI.
In September 2018, thousands of Beetle fans joined the “Beetle Sunshine Tour” in Wolfsburg, to celebrate the 20th birthday of the New Beetle. The festival started 14 years ago. The 2018 iteration was the first one to happen in Wolfsburg. More than 200 original Beetles, New Beetles and Beetles drove through the factory.