German Auto Industry Stalls
During the month of March, registrations in Germany have dropped by 17.1%. In response to the crisis, German manufacturers are planning the construction of factories outside Europe. Emmanuel Egloff reports for Le Figaro.
Tough times continue for the European car industry. In March, registrations fell by 10.2% to 1.454 million new vehicles. This marks the 18th consecutive monthly decline. The market pulled back by 9.8% in the first quarter alone. Peugeot-Citroen saw a decline of 16% while the Renault group saw its registrations fall by “only” 9.6%.
But more than anything, this publication shows the stalling of Germany, which saw a decline of 17.1% during the month of March. In 2012, registrations in Germany were off by only 2.9%, against 8.2% in the whole of Europe.
The Volkswagen group saw its sales fall 9%, including a plunge of 14.6% for its single brand Volkswagen. Aware of this slowdown and driven by the desire to protect themselves from currency fluctuations, German groups plan to build factories outside Europe. Volkswagen, BMW and Daimler will spend $25 billion by 2017 for this purpose, according to Bloomberg.
The Worst Case Scenario is Possible
Earlier this year, observers were asking questions about the evolution of the European market. Current figures show that the worst-case scenario is possible. “We are moving towards a double-digit decrease in sales throughout the year,” says Bernard Jullien of Gerpisa, a research group specializing in the automotive industry. Plans by manufacturers to reduce costs alone may not be enough.