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Business

Volkswagen Pulls Luxury Phaeton Model Out of US Market

Volkswagen, Europe's biggest car maker, said Monday it planned to pull its luxury Phaeton model from the United States market next year, putting an end to VW's venture into the top-end segment in the US.

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Little demand in the United States

"We'll pull the Phaeton from the US market from the summer of 2006, the start of the new model year," a VW spokesman said. The spokesman attributed the decision to the poor sales in the US.

"We have to concentrate first on our core business and on ways of returning to the old level of sales of models such as the Passat, the Jetta and the New Beetle," he said.

VW booked a loss of 907 million euros ($1 billion) in the US and Canada last year and was penciling in a loss of a similar magnitude again this year.

Sales of the Phaeton have disappointed, despite price discounts. Last year, VW sold just 6,000 Phaeton cars, a long way short of the initial goal of 13,000.

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