“2010 could become the best year in the history of the automobile,” said Daimler’s Zetsche today, while Automobilwoche [sub] was furiously scribbling notes. “The best times of the car are in front of us.” Times are especially well for manufacturers for luxury cars. Had Dr. Z been drinking? Not necessarily.
German numbers for June new cars sales will probably be released on Monday. Of course they’ll be down, compared to a 2009 market on Abwrackpräminen steroids. In the first six months of 2010, 1.47m cars were registered in Germany, says the German industry association Verband der Automobilindustrie (via Automobilwoche [sub]), that’s 29 percent less than in the first six months of 2009. Does that sound like a banner year?
However, from January through June, the German auto industry produced 23 percent more cars than in the same period of 2009. What are they doing with all those cars?
They export them in droves. The low Euro suddenly makes a German car affordable abroad (or profitable, depending on who pockets the currency windfall.) Exports, mainly to Asia, jumped 44 percent in the first six months. For the whole year of 2010, the VDA expects a drop in domestic sales of anywhere between 24 and 27 percent. On the other hand, exports should rise by at least 20 percent to more than 4m units. All in all, German car production should rise by 10 percent for the year, above and beyond the insane Abwrackprämien levels of 2009. Who would have thunk it. Wait until Obama hears that. Here is the true job machine: Devalue the dollar.