BMW finance chief Friedrich Eichiner is upbeat about the prospects for the premium auto sector in 2012, predicting that sales will grow 8%, twice as fast as the overall car market.

"Around the world, we see market growth of 4% and more than 8% in the premium market," he told Sueddeutsche Zeitung in an interview.

Growth will come from the US and China while Europe will remain flat, he said.

To meet that expected growth, BMW will expand production where demand is strongest, in India, China and Latin America, he said, while remaining committed to Germany.