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Audi December 2018 sales drop 14.3% YOY

Audi AG sold 154,550 vehicles in December 2018, falling 14.3% year over year, and 1,812,500 automobiles in 2018, down 3.5% from 2017.

CEO Bram Schot attributed the sales decrease to an "extremely challenging" 2018 and to the introduction of the EU's Worldwide Harmonized Light Vehicle Test Procedure emissions norms, which affected auto sales across Europe. Schot added that the company is preparing for "new challenges ahead" this year.

The WLTP, which had been taking a toll on Audi's deliveries since September 2018, dragged the carmaker's December sales in Europe down to 51,500 units, a 20.9% year-over-year decrease. In the U.S., Audi's sales dropped 15.6% year over year to 22,765 automobiles, while its China sales fell 5.2% to 65,598 vehicles during the same period.

For 2018, Audi reported record-breaking China sales at 663,049 vehicles sold, up 10.9% from 2017. However, sales in Europe suffered, falling 13.6% year over year to 743,600 units sold. The carmaker's U.S. sales decreased 1.4% to 223,323 automobiles.

In November 2018, the Volkswagen AG unit reported a 16.7% year-over-year decline in global sales.