Despite the fallout from its diesel emissions cheating scandal, the Volkswagen Group has managed to take the lead in global sales for the first six months of 2016.
The German automaker delivered 5.12 million vehicles over the period, a 1.5 percent improvement over the same period a year ago, which was prior to the revelation of the scandal.
Toyota, which won the sales race in 2015, saw its deliveries for the first six months of 2016 come in at 4.99 million vehicles, a decrease of 0.6 percent from the same period a year ago.
Toyota blamed the decline on production halts at some plants in Japan due to an earthquake and an explosion. The company’s hybrids like the Prius have also seen demand decrease due to lower fuel prices.
2015 Volkswagen Golf TDI SE
But VW shouldn’t pop the Champagne just yet. The automaker is facing its own woes. Here in the United States the automaker is yet to reach a settlement for the 85,000 cars sold with larger 3.0-liter V-6 engines included in the diesel emissions cheating scandal.
The Korean government has also accused VW of falsifying emissions documents and manipulating noise reports, and on Tuesday prohibited the sale of 80 models from the various VW Group brands. A VW executive in Korea was even indicted on charges of submitting manipulated emissions data.
It was also revealed on Tuesday that the German state of Bavaria plans to sue VW for damages for losses from its pension fund following the revelation of the scandal. The fund was an investor of VW and lost around 700,000 euros (approximately $783,580). It is the first regional government in VW's home country to take legal action against the automaker.
In July Germany’s Transport Ministry revealed that it will not punish VW for the scandal, claiming a recall of the affected cars was sufficient. The Ministry also backed VW’s decision not to compensate affected owners in Germany like it did in the U.S., as any compensation would have to be provided for other affected owners in Europe, of which there are around 8.5 million.