I would stay away from VAG right now.
-they are heavily exposed to China. Beside the geopolitical risk, their Chinese market share has been falling as domestic producers have learned how to make decent products.
-VW brand market share has been falling in the EU. Audi brand market share has also fallen off it’s peak of ten years ago.
-VW’s crop of new SUVs rang up robust sales in the US, for a couple years, but sales are now falling.
-US market product quality and reliability has fallen off sharply over the last ten years. Ten years ago, CR’s reliability data showed some VW models to be sound enough to be recommended. My 2014 VW has been excellent. In the bad old days of the 1990s, VWs were troublesome, but, when they were right, they drove well. Now, they don’t even drive well when they are working as designed, and are deluged with electronic and powertrain faults.
-I had hopes that the TDI scandal would cause enough belt-tightening in Wolfsburg to force the company to clean out the redundant and halo brands that linger from Ferdinand Piëch’s " empire building" in the 90s, but no, they have not. Some years ago, I saw Sergio Marchionne comment that Bugatti is “the biggest waste of capital I have ever seen”, yet the bleeding continues. VAG buries the costs of these halo brands, rather than reporting them separately, as they do with the operations that make money.
As far as I am concerned, Martin Winterkorn presided over peak VW. His resignation due to the TDI scandal, seems to have handed the company over to “professional management”, exploiting the brand by offering poorly executed products at premium prices.
Herbert Diess presided over most of the fall from the peak Winterkorn took the company too. He was fired last year.
Will we see a renaissance at VAG, or continued MBA nonsense? Considering VAG is dropping a pile of money to try and leverage the old Scout name for a new line of EV SUVs, I don’t see renaissance, but more MBA nonsense, trying to leverage a largely forgotten brand, to try and gouge customers the way Jeep does.