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NINETY EIGHT REGENCY

Bentley, Seat losses burden VW's profits

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Bentley, Seat losses burden VW's profits

Paul McVeigh

Automotive News Europe -- October 27, 2010 11:24 CET

Volkswagen AG's Bentley and Seat units were the only money losers in VW Group's stable of brands during the first nine months.

Despite increasing unit sales by 29.9 percent, the UK-based Bentley ultraluxury marque's operating loss was 145 million euros ($200 million), slightly lower than the 148 million posted for the same period last year.

Seat brand profited from the recovery of the Spanish passenger car market, with unit sales climbing by 10.6 percent to 260,000. The increase helped to narrow the struggling Spanish brand's operating loss to 218 million euros from 228 million euros.

Audi almost doubled its operating profit to 2.3 billion euros, boosted by a 13.6 percent increase in unit sales to 968,000.

"The figures for the Lamborghini brand, which are included in the key figures for the Audi brand, also showed a positive development," VW said in a statement without elaborating.

The core VW passenger car brand lifted unit sales by 11.8 percent to 2.8 million euros and its operating profit improved to 1.6 billion euros from 300 million euros. The growth was driven in particular by demand for the Polo, New Beetle, Tiguan, Touareg, Jetta and Passat models, VW said.

Skoda's operating profit rose to 314 million euros from 162 million euros, with unit sales rising by 4.3 percent in the first three quarters to 426,000, boosted by strong demand for the Octavia, Superb and Yeti models.

The figures were released Wednesday by VW as it gave more details of its financial results for the first three quarters. Last Friday, VW had said group sales revenue was up 19.9 percent in the first nine months to 92.5 billion euros.

Read more: http://www.autonews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20101027/ANE/101029878/1193#ixzz13ZcrwPti

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