While recovering from the last global recession, the automakers that survived it would have an opportunity over the next several years to tap into rapid growth overseas while sales in the U.S. will continue to increase more gradually.
According to analysts from IHS Automotive, rapid global expansion of the automotive industry will put even greater pressure on parts suppliers as manufacturers continue to increase the pace of new product introductions.
“At no other time in recent history has the North American automotive market been as well positioned as it is today, ” said Mike Jackson, director of North American vehicle forecasting for IHS Automotive.
In the U.S., automotive sales have recovered to an expected total of 15.5 million this year from a low of 10.4 million in 2009.
U.S. sales will continue to increase over the next four years in the U.S., but the pace will slow at the same time that product introductions increase, said Jackson.
That slowing growth rate will put more pressure on US automakers as they launch 57 new cars and trucks in the next year and vie more intensely for greater market share. But at the same time that sales will grow slowly in the U.S., global sales are expected to increase 22% over the next four years as sales skyrocket from about 82 million this year to more than 100 million by 2018.
Charles Chesbrough, economist for IHS Automotive, said the economic outlook for almost all regions of the world – including Europe – is improving. But even with Europe recovering, the real opportunities for automakers will be global markets ranging from China to Thailand and Brazil to Chile.