French carmaker Renault SA, the third biggest auto company in Europe, has seen its January to June deliveries rise by 4.7%, thanks mainly to very strong interest shown by customers for the affordable Dacia brand.
According to a statement issued by the Boulogne-Billancourt, France-based company, its six month sales rose to 1.37 million cars and light commercial vehicles from the 1.3 million figure for the same period of 2013. By the end of the month the company is also scheduled to release its first half-year financial standings and so far the automaker has revised positively its forecast for the overall European auto sales in 2014, from 2 to 3% to 3 to 4%.
“The first half was clearly a huge surprise in terms of the performance they’ve shown in Western Europe and the Dacia brand,” said Arndt Ellinghorst, an automotive analyst at ISI Group in London.
We were “able to diminish the impact of the decline in our main emerging markets and to maintain the group’s positive momentum,” added Chief Performance Officer Jerome Stoll.
Renault, which has been in recent years pushing towards emerging markets to reduce its dependence on the core European region – which was hit by a economic crisis that took demand towards a two-decade low – has seen its sales in those weaker countries – like Russia, Argentina and Algeria – tally to a 9% decline in the outside home region deliveries.
Dacia’s European surge – 24% for the first six months contributed to Renault’s 18% gain for the core European region, managing to offset the lower then expected results elsewhere.