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Volkswagen to Cut 300 jobs

March 17, 1992

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. (AP) _ Volkswagen of America says it will lay off 25 percent of its 1,200-member U.S. work force this spring.

″The intent is, we want to streamline management,″ Maria Leonhauser, a spokeswoman for Auburn Hills-based Volkswagen of America, said Monday. ″It obviously will reduce costs, and we’ll become more efficient.″

Layoff notices will be issued April 1, with departures expected by May 1, she said.

The German automaker only has sales and marketing staff in the United States. The restructuring will cut its eight U.S. zones to five. About 800 of Volkswagen of America’s 1,200 workers are in Auburn Hills, but Leonhauser said the layoffs will be nationwide.

Volkswagen sales in the United States peaked at 440,000 a year in the 1960s but dropped to 96,723 in 1991.

″It’s been a struggle, but one that’s certainly winnable,″ Leonhauser said. ″There’s a long-term strategy here.″

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