BERLIN (AP) -- Volkswagen AG's worldwide deliveries were up by nearly a quarter in the first three months of this year as the car market rebounded in many regions, the company said Friday.
Europe's largest automaker said its brands delivered 1.73 million cars in the first quarter, an increase of 24.6 percent over a year earlier.
First-quarter sales were up nearly 61 percent in China to 457,300 cars and 37.2 percent in the U.S. to 80,000, said the company, based in Wolfsburg, Germany.
Overall European sales were up 13.5 percent to 837,100; deliveries in Volkswagen's German home market, where a government car-scrapping bonus program expired in September, were up a modest 1.2 percent at 254,400.
The Volkswagen group includes units such as Audi, Skoda and Seat. It did not give separate figures for March.
"There are clear signs of a revival on the overall passenger car market in many parts of the world," VW board member Christian Klingler said in a statement.
"Nevertheless, we still expect this to be a tough year," he said. "We believe that differentiated growth in the various regions of the world is likely to continue over the coming months."
The core Volkswagen brand's overall deliveries were up 27 percent in the first quarter, while sales rose 25.9 percent at Audi, 25 percent at Skoda, and 15.1 percent at Seat, the company said.
Volkswagen shares were up 1.7 percent at euro71.59 ($97.18) in Frankfurt trading.