Continental expects second-quarter sales to match Q1 8.3 billion euros image

Continental AG (CON), Europe’s second- largest auto-parts maker said Thursday that record sales in the first quarter are likely to be repeated in the second quarter, and the company is optimistic.

Revenue will rise more than 5 percent in 2012 to exceed 32 billion euros ($42 billion), while adjusted earnings before interest and taxes as a proportion of sales will match last year’s margin, Hanover, Germany-based Continental said today in a statement.

Still, the company will review its full-year forecast after the second quarter, the CFO said, noting that the financial crisis in the euro area could again weaken economic development in the region.

“The excellent start to the new year makes us optimistic about meeting the goals we have set for ourselves for the year,” Continental chief executive Elmar Degenhart said in the press release.

Continental expects a EUR100 million burden from rising rubber prices at its tire production operations, but cost increases for rare earth materials this year are likely to be lower than the previously estimated EUR150 million.