Volkswagen has powered ahead of the gloom engulfing the global car industry, with rising summer profits driven by sport utility vehicle (SUV) sales.
Despite this, the German giant warned that the global car market would “contract faster than previously anticipated in many regions of the world”.
Volkswagen reported a more than 43 per cent year-on-year rise in pre-tax profit for the third quarter to €5bn (£4.3bn), bringing the total cars it has delivered in the first nine months of the year to 8m.
This came despite slowing sales at its premium brand Audi, while sales at Porsche rose nearly eight per cent as it gears up to launch its all-electric Taycan model.
Meanwhile at its luxury Bentley brand, it sold 7,224 vehicles over the first nine months of the year, up from 6,654 cars at the same point last year. Sales revenue increased to €1.3bn over the period from €1.1bn.
Nine-month adjusted operating profit rose to €14.8bn, up from €13.3bn.
The car maker said that despite the growth, its deliveries to customers would be flat, in light of the contraction in the global auto industry.
“The performance in the first nine months of the financial year makes us optimistic that we will achieve our full-year targets for 2019,” said Frank Witter, Volkswagen’s finance boss. “Continuous improvement in our profitability is key to mastering our ongoing transformation on our own. We will continue to work systematically towards this goal.”
The firm said special items from legal risks, which stemmed from its 2015 diesel-emissions cheating scandal, had fallen to €1.3bn, down from €2.4bn.