Market experts say that next summer, European carmakers will start to see sales recover from the double-dip recession that has plagued Europe since May 2008.
Jonathan Poskitt, European sales forecast manager at J.D. Power and Associates, said that the Western European car demand is expected to recover in the second half of next year, possibly from July.
Poskitt adds that in the 1st half of 2011, sales in Western Europe will decline six to seven percent but in the last six months of 2011, sales will climb by three to four percent.
Poskitt expects that, for the entire year, sales will decline 2.1 percent to 12.6 million units. Stuart Pearson, a London-based Morgan Stanley analyst, predicts that the downturn will hit bottom in the first quarter of 2011, then gradually ease afterwards. Pearson expects a three percent sales decrease in 2011.
The monthly sales reported by ACEA, the European automaker association, show that sales in EU started falling in May 2008 before the global economic crisis brought by the collapse of Lehman Brothers in September 2008.
After that, sales fell for 13 months in a row until May 2009. In June 2009, demand started recovering when scrappage incentives in Germany, France, Spain, Italy and the United Kingdom boosted the European market. Market data show that European auto sales are in a W-shaped downturn, which is also known as a double-dip recession. [via autonews - sub. required]