Last year, world car production had jumped 26 percent to 77.8 million units, as it recovered from a carmageddon-induced slump. This year, global car output will see a “sharp slowdown,” if The Nikkei [sub] is to be believed. The Tokyo business paper cites IHS and J.D.Power, both expect only 4 percent growth. The Nikkei however should do some chart studies before writing.
As the graph above shows, that growth rate is not a sharp slowdown, is simply is a return to normalcy. Last year’s 26 percent jump was the counter-reaction to a 12.4 percent slump in 2009. From 1998 to 2007, the global car market expanded at an average rate of 3 percent per year – in a more or less linear fashion. Pre-carmageddon, the rolling 3 year average was a little above 4 percent annual growth. The worldwide market is simply getting back into its old pace.
The cars lost during carmageddon however appear to be lost for good.
What I am seeing is a sharp slowdown in my trust in major wire services.