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PESTLE and SWOT analysis of Volkswagen AG 2016-2017


By: Jonathan Kush


Volkswagen AG may still be the world’s second largest automaker in the world after Toyota but negative macro trends and interferences from its external environment could take a toll on the company’s performance this year drastically changing the auto landscape. Such interferences include Trumps 20% tariff threat on all EU made cars which he wants implemented by November 2018. The UK, Volkswagen’s second biggest market in Europe, recently introduced a new initiative that will end sales of diesel and petrol cars by 2040. If fully implemented, at least 50% of news cars sold in the UK must be ultra-low emissions by this date. For Volkswagen and other automakers, the threat is clear; move to electric or perish. The company has also paid more than $25bn in fines and damages related to its 2015 ‘diesel-gate’ scandal, an amount that excludes the threat of future financial compensation from civil litigation. These are some of the macro factors looked at in this report using PESTEL and SWOT to determine how Volkswagen can leverage its internal core competences like supreme innovation, engineering, manufacturing and assembly to position itself better in the future despite adverse macro influences as well as take advantage of new macro opportunities.


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