Super car

Can German OEMs check China’s growth in the European market?

Germany’s automotive industry generated a turnover of €410.9bn (US$444.4bn) in 2021, according to Germany Trade and Invest—the country’s economic development agency. That same year it recorded a workforce totalling 786,106 people, contained 933 OEMs and suppliers, and had an export turnover of €273.9bn. Furthermore, Germany led Europe in terms of both passenger car production (3.1 million, 50% more than second-place Spain) and registrations (2.6 million, 40% more than the UK).

However, an anticipated influx of cars from China could soon challenge Germany’s dominance in the European market. A November 2022 study from PwC concluded that more than 800,000 Chinese vehicles, primarily battery electric vehicles (BEVs), could be imported to the continent by 2025. If accurate, the analyst concluded that this would make Europe a net importer of cars. “Chinese manufacturers have optimised and developed their products in the domestic market, so that they are now bringing affordable BEV models, innovative technology and novel concepts to Europe,” said Felix Kuhnert, Automotive Leader at PwC Germany.

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