According to figures coming from PwC Autofacts, European light vehicle production could climb 1 percent to 1.36 million vehicles in January, the fifth month that sees rising output on the continent.
Thanks to the region’s slow but steady auto market recovery and the continued positive prospects of North American and Asian regions, BMW, Fiat, Ford and Volkswagen are expected to post the largest vehicle production increases. They benefit from growing sales of models such as the Fiat 500X, BMW 2 series, Ford Fiesta, VW Golf and Golf Sportsvan. Higher production levels, a boon for the threatened jobs in the industry, are also great news for the overall health of the European economy, currently on the verge of prolonged deflation. The one percentage rise, though modest, comes immediately after automakers jumped production levels by 25 % in December to cope with demand and send dealerships their latest available models.
Ford of Europe, for example, said recently it was moving to increase production at its two German factories in Cologne and Saarlouis by 540 cars daily as of February, calling back workers that were in furlough since the fourth quarter. “December was completely crazy since a lot of plants powered through the Christmas holidays. VW is lagging behind (demand) with the Golf, the Opel Corsa is ramping up, the C class is another driver,” comments Christoph Stuermer, Autofacts global lead analyst at PwC. The European market is today driven by fleet purchases, with Dataforce releasing data that showed that in December the corporate and company car sales in the region’s five biggest markets soared by 12 percent, compared to just one percent for private cars.
Via Automotive News Europe