BMW and Daimler manage to make up for the loss in Europe, as demand increases in the US and China, pushing luxury car production to maximum levels.
BMW plans to reach its third consecutive year of record sales in 2013, after it sold 250,000 vehicles during the first two months of this year, an increase of 6%. According to CEO Norbert Reithofer announcement made today at the Geneva Auto Show, “our factories are running at full capacity.” Mercedes-Benz is also adding shifts to meet increased demand for compact vehicles, according to CEO Dieter Zetsche.
The two German automakers are focusing on the markets outside Europe, introducing new models and trying to attract more customers, to make up for the loss on the continent. Analysts predict that the European market will fall for the sixth consecutive year in 2013 and might lose 3% of capacity utilization to 63%.
“BMW and Mercedes have a whole bunch of new products at the start,” said Christoph Stuermer, a Frankfurt-based analyst at IHS Automotive research company. “Mercedes needs to fill the pipeline for the new A-Class compact and E-Class. It remains to be seen in about half a year how successful they really are.”
BMW came at the Geneva Auto Shoe with its 3-Series GT crossover coupe and prepares to roll put its first EV, the BMW i3 city car, at the end of 2013, while Daimler will come with the revamped version of the up-scale E-Class sedan and the Mercedes CLA compact coupe.