The Sony Corp. says it will begin marketing VHS-format video cassette recorders in the United States this fall.

A Sony official said the electronics giant began marketing VHS-format VCRs in Europe in May and will begin selling them in Japan July 21.Sony has produced and marketed only Beta-format VCRs in the past, and the official said Sony will continue to market Beta-format VCRs at home and abroad in fiscal 1988, which ends next March 31.

Sony's decision to manufacture VHS-format VCRs capped a long rivalry between its Beta system, introduced in 1975, and the incompatible VHS standard, introduced a year later by the Japan Victor Corp. (JVC).

Since their introduction, the number of companies selling Beta machines has declined while VHS models have grown in popularity, currently accounting for an estimated 90 percent of the world market.

Analysts have said Sony was not active enough in soliciting other companies to join it in making and marketing the Beta system, and was late in responding to consumer demand.