By Nathan Allen
Volkswagen AG (VOW.XE) said Friday that its global sales in 2018 rose slightly on year, despite an adverse economic situation in the second half of the year, which weighed on demand.
The German auto maker said global sales in 2018 rose by 0.9% to 10.8 million vehicles. However, December sales fell by 8.4% to 916,200 units.
Volkswagen pointed to the trade dispute between China and the U.S. and the WLTP emissions-testing protocol in Europe as reasons for the weaker performance toward the end of the year.
Sales in China fell by around 13% in December and by 5.6% in Europe, Volkswagen said.
Brazil was the best performing region in December, with sales growth of more than 50%.
"The reluctance to buy on the part of consumers had a negative impact on the entire automobile market, which contracted for the first time after many years in 2018," the company said.
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