UPDATE 1-VW brand suffers biggest drop in car sales this year

lunes 8 de diciembre de 2014 12:39 GYT

* VW brand sales haven't grown since July

* VW November brand sales 508,400 cars vs. 529,500 year-ago

* Passat model changeover hurt sales -VW (Adding executive comment, detail on regional sales and context)

BERLIN, Dec 8 (Reuters) - Sales of Volkswagen's core passenger-car brand fell 4 percent in November, the biggest monthly drop this year, as demand for autos contracted in Eastern Europe and Latin America and the manufacturer switched to a new model late in the month.

Deliveries of the VW namesake brand declined to 508,400 autos last month from 529,500 a year ago, the company said on Monday, marking the fourth straight month of little or no volume growth at Europe's No. 1 automaker.

VW brand sales slipped 0.4 percent in October and were almost flat in September and August.

"The challenging developments on markets worldwide will continue for the remainder of this year," VW sales chief Christian Klingler said. The brand "was not entirely immune to their impact."

Contributing to the decline, the company said, an overhauled, more upscale version of the Passat model, VW's No.2 seller, hit dealerships in the last week of November. Not only did people hold off buying the expiring Passat, but also demand for a new volume model tends to start slow and build gradually.

Political risks weighed on sales in Central and Eastern Europe, which have declined 8.4 percent since January, with Russia alone posting a 20 percent drop, according to VW.

Deliveries in Latin America plunged 18 percent in the January-to-November period, with Brazil posting a 13 percent drop. (Reporting by Andreas Cremer; Editing by Kirsti Knolle and Jane Baird)