The Audi Group sailed through the first quarter of 2021 by selling 462,828 vehicles globally, charting a 31.1% growth over the same – albeit pandemic-stricken – quarter last year. China (including Hong Kong) remains its largest market with 207,386 vehicles delivered, a historic high in terms of quarterly sales. Sales jumped 83% from 113,330 units, the latter a result of the early lockdown imposed across China to slow the spread of the Covid-19 disease.
The four rings also did considerably well in the USA, shifting close to 55,000 cars in the country alone. That is also an unprecedented feat. Some of the most popular Audi models include the Audi Q7, Q8, e-tron and A6, all of which sold favourably well in the US and China.
However, in Europe, sales contracted to 155,325 units, down -6.1% compared to the 165,389 cars it sold Q1 2020. This, Audi said, is attributed to production cutbacks caused by the global semiconductor shortage.
Sales in its home market was affected the most – Audi sold 47,523 cars in Germany, down -24.5% from Q1 2020 when it sold 62,959 vehicles. In Spain, it sold 8,403 cars, down -19.8% compared to the 10,479 cars sold in Q1 in the same period last year.
Over the course of the first three months in 2021, Audi posted a sales revenue of 14.07 million euros (RM70.32 million), up 12.9% from 12.45 million euros (RM62.23 million) from the previous year. Its operating profit went up as well at 1.404 million euros (RM7 million). Meanwhile, sales revenues for Lamborghini was 509 million euros (RM2.54 billion), exceeding last year’s 483 million euros (RM2.41 billion).
Newly appointed Audi CFO, Jürgen Rittersberger said: “The past months have clearly shown how well the Audi Group is positioned. We have taken the strong momentum from the fourth quarter into the year 2021, continued to reduce costs in a measured way, and given priority to future projects.”
“As part of the Volkswagen Group, we at Audi take advantage of synergies that other premium manufacturers can hardly match. A good example of this is the new, fully electric Audi Q4 e-tron based on the group-wide MEB platform,” he said.
Audi continues to be cautiously optimistic for the remainder of 2021. Due to the ongoing effects of the coronavirus pandemic and semiconductor shortage, its forecast remains unchaged – the Audi Group expects an operating return on sales of between 7% and 9%. For net cash flow, it expects a figure between 3.5 to 4.5 billion euros (RM17.49 to RM22.49 billion).
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