Geely's Volvo Cars sold 131,889 cars in the first quarter of 2020, down 18.2% year on year. The company said global sales performance was affected by the continued impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

March sales plunged 31.2% to 46,395 cars, led by weakening demand in Europe and the US.

China, however, was showing signs of recovery, as showroom traffic continued to improve.

During the January to March quarter, the XC60 was the top selling model, followed by the XC40 and XC90.

SUVs accounted for 67.9% of the company's total sales in the period, up from 60.3% a year ago.

The Recharge line accounted for 14.7% of all cars sold in the first quarter versus 7.4% in Q1 2019.

China sales during the quarter reached 20,780 cars, down 30.5%, due primarily to the lower sales performance in January and February.

In March, showroom traffic in the region started to pick up.

Earlier this month Volvo Cars also reopened its four manufacturing plants in China after an extended closure period due to the spread of the virus.

US sales fell 11.7% to 19,485 cars. A majority of states have now implemented stay at home orders which have led to a significant drop in showroom traffic in March that affected the first quarter volumes.

Europe sales fell 18.5% to 70,510 cars in the first three months of the year. The sales performance was significantly impacted in March due to restricted movement in several key markets including Germany, UK, France, Italy and Belgium.

During the first three months, the XC60 was the company's top selling model with total sales of 36,930 cars (2019: 46,259 cars), followed by the XC40 with 34,268 cars (28,903) and the XC90 with 18,327 cars (22,073).