Hyundai Motor Co. expects the global auto industry to sell a total of around 77.1 million units in 2012, cutting its previous forecast in April by around 500,000 vehicles. According to Lee Won Hee, Hyundai’s Chief Financial Officer, the industry-wide demand for vehicles in Europe will drop to 6.43 million vehicles in the second half of 2012, after car manufacturers sold around 7.65 million units in the first six months this year, amid the deteriorating economic situation in the continent. Hyundai’s revised forecast comes as industry-wide sales in Europe fell 3.2 percent, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Lee said that although the economic situation in Europe will worsen in the second half of 2012, the Korean carmaker will still able to achieve its global sales target. Seoul-based Hyundai posted a 10-percent increase in net income for the first half of 2012 to KRW2.55 trillion ($2.2 billion), surpassing the KRW2.43 trillion net profit average of 26 analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg. The company logged a 9.2-percent increase in sales in the first half of 2012 to KRW21.94 trillion. The company’s strong first-half performance in Europe, where sales surged 18 percent, was mainly attributed to the solid sales posted by its Hyundai ix35 sports utility vehicle, also known as the Tucson outside of Europe.
Gallery: 2012 Hyundai i20