FRANKFURT - German premium carmaker Audi, the cash cow of the Volkswagen group, reaffirmed on Monday its target to grow revenue and operating profit as it sells more than 1 million vehicles for the second time in its history.

Audi sailed through the worst crisis for luxury carmakers with relative ease last year thanks to its leading position in the booming Chinese market, posting an operating profit of 1.60 billion euros ($2.1 billion) in 2009 on revenue of 29.8 billion euros.

Deliveries to customers fell just 5.4 percent to 949,729 vehicles.

As demand in western Europe for premium cars slowly recovers, brands like Audi, BMW and Mercedes are all set to grow sales faster than their volume rivals.

The result from our first quarter forms a solid base for our annual target of surpassing turnover and operating profit from 2009, Finance Chief Axel Strotbek said in a statement.

Parent Volkswagen reported on Thursday results that showed Audi increased its operating margin by 40 basis points to 5.8 percent in the first quarter.

(Reporting by Christiaan Hetzner)