Report: German automakers adding production shifts to meet demand

Article by Christian Andrei, on May 10, 2011

Germany-based vehicle manufacturers are adding production shifts in order to meet the demands of the market, an indication that a sharp growth in auto sales seen in the first few months of the year is expected to continue.

According to a spokesperson for Volkswagen AG, which is the largest automaker in Europe, the company is studying to keep one production line running at its main factory in Wolfsburg during its traditional summer shutdown on a voluntary basis in order for the company to continue delivering its vehicles. On the other hand, BMW and the luxury vehicle unit of VW Group, Audi, are operating at high capacity levels.

A representative for Audi disclosed that the company is adding some production shifts to shorten delivery times. BMW is planning to do the same, according to its spokesperson.

Moreover, the German vehicle manufacturers reported strong results for the first quarter this year, as a result of the growing sales in markets like Russia and Britain, the continued strong demand in the Chinese market, as well as the recovery of the U.S. automobile market.

BMW outperformed its competitors with a sharp rise in sales for the first quarter, with the strong demand from the United States and China as contributing factor.

Volkswagen, with the emerging markets boosting a sharp increase in sales, beat quarterly earnings forecasts from analysts. The company is brought closer to its aim of outperforming Toyota Motor Corp. as the largest automaker in the world by 2018.

Opel, the Germany-based subsidiary of General Motors Co., is adding eight production shifts through July at its plants in Gliwice, Poland, and in Ellesmere Port, England, in order to meet the demand for its Astra compact, a representative for Opel disclosed.

Topics: germany, production

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