SEOUL: Foreign luxury car sales in South Korea posted a double-digit increase last year despite worries that Volkswagen’s emissions scandal may dent demand for imported vehicles, an industry data showed on Thursday.
Imported car sales reached 243,900 units in 2015, up 24.2 percent from the previous year, according to the Korea Automobile Importers and Distributors Association (KAIDA).
The surge came despite concerns about possible fall in demand for foreign luxury cars, caused by the emissions fabricating scandal involving the German automaker Volkswagen.
Volkswagen’s Tiguan 2.0 TDI BlueMotion was the most popular model last year, with 9,467 units sold here. It was followed by Audi’s A6 35 TDI with 7,049 units sold here and BMW’s 520d with 6,640 units.
BMW was the top seller of foreign luxury models by selling 47,877 units here in 2015. It was trailed by Mercedes Benz with 46,994 units and Volkswagen with 35,778 units each. Audi came next with 32,538 units sold, and Ford ranked fifth with a sale of 10,358 units.
European cars accounted for 80.9 percent of the total foreign auto sales here in 2015, followed by Japanese and U.S. models.
Vehicles with an engine capacity of less than 2 liters were most popular, taking up 55.8 percent of the total sales. The portion of vehicles with 2-3 liters of displacement was 35.0 percent last year.