VW brand sales slip in March on weak Europe, South America

BERLIN, April 9 Tue Apr 9, 2013 4:26am EDT

BERLIN, April 9 (Reuters) - German car maker Volkswagen said sales of its main namesake brand slipped 0.8 percent in March on declining demand in western Europe and Latin America.

VW brand deliveries fell to 532,400 vehicles last month from 536,700 a year earlier, the Wolfsburg-based car maker said on Tuesday.

"As expected, markets are becoming more difficult, and in some cases decidedly more challenging," VW sales chief Christian Klingler said in an emailed statement.

First-quarter sales of VW's biggest volume brand gained 5.2 percent to 1.43 million vehicles. The manufacturer may release sales data for the group, including nameplates such as luxury division Audi and Czech unit Skoda, later this week. (Reporting by Andreas Cremer; Editing by Christoph Steitz)