Volkswagen sign on factory in Wolfsburg, via PAVolkswagen sign on factory in Wolfsburg, via PA

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Volkswagen sees profits fall and lowers its sales forecast as semiconductors crisis continues to bite

  • Operating profit for VW fell by 12 per cent to 2.8bn euros in third quarter
  • Deliveries this year will be in line with 2020, as forecast is lowered
  • Push into EVs continued during quarter, despite microchips shortage

Time 1 month ago

Volkswagen has lowered its deliveries forecast and posted a decrease in operating profits for the third quarter, blaming the worldwide semiconductors crisis.

It said the ongoing shortage disproportionately hit its business in China despite strong demand there for its cars.

Previously, Volkswagen expected an increase in unit sales, but now it says deliveries in 2021 will be in line with 2020’s.


The Wolfsburg-based company said operating profit fell by 12 per cent to 2.8bn euros (circa £2.3bn) versus the same quarter in 2020, which was weak as well because of the pandemic.

Volume brands such as its flagship Volkswagen nameplate recorded operating losses in spite of full order books. It lost nearly a quarter – 24 per cent – of its unit sales in its home market in Europe compared with the 2020 period.

Chief financial officer Arno Antlitz called the results a challenge to make ‘decisive improvements’ in keeping costs down and improving productivity.

In a statement with the earnings release, he said: ‘The semiconductor bottlenecks in the third quarter made it abundantly clear to us that we are not yet resilient enough to fluctuations in capacity utilisation.’


Demand for semiconductors in everything from game consoles to tablets to webcams has exceeded the ability of chip makers to quickly increase production capacity, affecting the whole automotive industry.

VW’s push into EVs continued during the quarter, though, with 122,100 all-electric vehicles sold – more than twice the number year on year, despite the semiconductor shortage.

John Bowman's avatar

John has been with Car Dealer since 2013 after spending 25 years in the newspaper industry as a reporter then a sub-editor/assistant chief sub-editor on regional and national titles. John is chief sub-editor in the editorial department, working on Car Dealer, as well as handling social media.

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