European automotive production forecast raised in new report
According to the latest report, the recovery in production volumes has been underpinned by better-than-expected performances from several vehicle manufacturers and specific models, notably Ford (Fiesta), Opel (Astra), Nissan (Qashqai) and various VW group models. It is expected that European volumes in 2010 will reach 17.2 million units compared to 16.1 million in 2009. By 2014, production volumes are expected to grow to reach 20.4 million, back to the levels achieved in 2007.
'Although vehicle production volumes across Europe fell by more than 2.8 million units in 2009, there is increasing confidence regarding 2010 and beyond, thanks to the acceleration of new model programmes and the strong performance by many vehicle manufacturers over the first quarter of 2010,' commented Paul Everitt, SMMT chief executive.
The SMMT also says that it believes that the financial and economic stabilisation package agreed by the EU finance ministers, the ECB and IMF will prevent the Greek debt crisis spreading to other markets and destroying consumer confidence.
However, the report notes that overcapacity remains a serious problem, and it highlights that vehicle manufacturers as a whole now appear to prefer "optimising" their existing manufacturing network rather than making serious structural cuts in production capacity.
Also included is an analysis of how electric and hybrid vehicles will become increasingly important in the make-up of European production over the next decade.
An executive summary of the report is available as part of a new online package launched by SMMT to help increase access to crucial automotive production intelligence. The new package, called the "European Production Outlook Suite", is an interactive tool kit which will help interested companies track vehicle production trends across Europe.
For more details, visit the SMMT website at www.smmt.co.uk.