First, the good news: on Monday night, Volkswagen SA built its 1.5-millionth export vehicle. The bright red VW Polo GTI is destined for a UK customer.

The company’s Kariega (formerly Uitenhage) assembly plant has been feeding overseas markets since 1992. With more than 21,000 export Polos already built in 2024, the company is beginning to eye its annual record of 108,422, set in 2019. In 2023, it built 101,557 cars...

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