The Japanese unit of German carmaker Volkswagen AG said Thursday it hopes to increase sales to 62,000 units in Japan in 2003 by introducing attractive new models and reinforcing its sales network in the Tokyo metropolitan area.

Tsutomu Umeno, president of the Japanese unit, said the firm will enter the luxury car segment by introducing the Touareg sport utility vehicle in summer and other models next year.

It also plans to start marketing the New Beetle Cabriolet convertible in the summer and open more outlets in Tokyo to expand its business in this country, he said.

Volkswagen Group Japan K.K. sold 59,843 units last year, claiming a 23.3-percent slice of the imported car market.

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