Volkswagen's deliveries rise 7.6 percent from last year in May

Volkswagen AG announced that its deliveries of new cars rose by 7.5 percent from last year, with 2.5 million sold amid rising demand in Europe and Asia.

The Wolfsburg-based company said sales of its VW-branded cars rose 7.1 percent to 1.5 million from January to May, while commercial vehicle sales rose 9 percent to 191,000 sold.

The company's Skoda brand reported a 14 percent increase in deliveries to 255,000, while sales of its luxury Audi AG unit were up 9.6 percent with 420,000 models sold.

But sales by its Spanish unit, Seat, posted a 1.6 decline from the first five months of 2006, with just 180,000 cars sold.

Sales growth was strong in Europe, where deliveries rose 2.9 percent, with 1.58 million vehicles sold, and in Asia, where sales rose 20 percent from last year, with 414,000 cars sold.

Deliveries in South America and South Africa also showed gains, with deliveries up 24 percent, while in North America, the VW and Audi brands saw a 1.8 percent increase with 215,000 cars sold.

Shares of Volkswagen were down nearly 1 percent to EUR114.19 (US$153.32) in Frankfurt trading.