Volkswagen’s sales rose last month despite emissions scandal

October 1, 2015, 6:49 PM UTC
Used cars of German carmaker Volkswagen stand on display at a Volkswagen car dealership on September 22, 2015 in Berlin, Germany.
Photograph by Sean Gallup—Getty Images

Volkswagen’s sales in the U.S. were up 0.56% year-over-year in September, despite the company’s emissions test scandal.

That’s unimpressive growth compared to rival automakers. Ford’s September sales increased by 23% compared to 2014, the Associated Press reports. Nissan, thanks to a 30% boost in sales of its Infiniti luxury brand, saw total sales rise by 18%. Fiat Chrysler just experienced its best September in almost a decade with a sales growth of nearly 14%. General Motors had the smallest rise in the month’s sales at 12% growth, but also sold the most vehicles.

Volkswagen’s sales may not be affected by the company’s ongoing scandal until later in the year. In mid-September, the company admitted 11 million of its diesel vehicles worldwide are equipped with software designed to cheat emissions testing, opening the company to fines and lawsuits and severely damaging its brand.

Analysts expected substantial growth for many automakers this month as a result of the late holiday. Labor Day deals have a significant impact on car sales. Last year, they were calculated into August sales; this year, they were counted towards September.