Volkswagen Group posted a 3% decline in its combined global sales volume in August, a sign of the growing impact on demand being wrought by slowing economic growth worldwide and the impact of turmoil in financial markets.

VW saw its overall global sales volumes fall to 448,000 units during the period, down from 462,000 units at the same point last year.

However, despite this worrying sales result VW was quick to point out that its sales volumes outperformed the fall in the overall global market, which contracted by 9.1% during the month according to VW's data.

VW's Executive Vice President for Group Sales and Marketing Detlef Wittig said: "The increasingly difficult economic conditions are also presenting our Group with a challenge. We are, however, very well placed to continue our success. We have a unique brand and product portfolio, an outstanding position in the growth regions and, of course, our fuel and powertrain strategy which paves the way towards ecologically and socially compatible mobility."

The Group also reiterated that the comparatively poor August sales performance has had only a marginal effect on year-to-date (YTD) sales growth, which increased by 4.1% year-on-year (y/y) between January and August.

In a research note, Global Insight said that the fall in sales posted by the VW Group in August is indicative of worsening global economic conditions.

It said that turmoil in the financial markets means that many of the growth plans that have been published by the major OEMs may have to be rewritten.