FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — German automaker Volkswagen said its global sales fell 15.2% during 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic but showed significant recovery toward the end of the year. The company more than tripled its sales of battery-only vehicles.

Global sales for all of Volkswagen’s brands amounted to 9.3 million vehicles. The fourth quarter showed a smaller decline of 5.7% and within that quarter the month of December was still further improved, showing a shortfall of only 3.2% from the same period the year before.

Volkswagen said Wednesday that sales fell the most in Western Europe, by 21.6%, while China, the company’s largest single market, was down 9.1%

Sales of battery-only cars jumped 214% to 231,600 from 73,700 across all the company’s brands. The company’s electric sales leaders included the Volkswagen ID.3 compact with 56,500, the Audi e-tron SUV with 47,300, and the high-end Porsche Taycan with 20,000.

Volkswagen said that its sales fell by less than the overall market, meaning it had slightly expanded its market share. “The COVID-19 pandemic made 2020 an extremely challenging year,” said group sales chief Christian Dahlheim. “The Volkswagen Group performed well in this environment and strengthened its market position.”

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