Europe's automotive association says the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiations taking place in Brussels could boost the car business by 20% or more.

Despite reservations from some trade union bodies, the European Automobile Manufacturers' Association (ACEA) says a recent study by the Peterson Institute for International Economics (PIIE) - "Gains from Harmonising US and EU Auto Regulations under the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership" - concludes automotive trade could rise by 20% or more, resulting in transatlantic income gains of more than US$20bn.

The industry estimates the increase would represent more than 240,000 more vehicles traded annually, worth more than US$9bn, and supporting tens of thousands of jobs.

"Eliminating tariffs and achieving greater auto regulatory convergence would also provide greater consumer choice, lower costs and improve the international competitiveness of the American and European auto industries," said an ACEA statement.

The American Automotive Policy Council (AAPC), ACEA and the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers say they strongly support an ambitious outcome for the automotive sector, which maximises consumer benefits and economic growth.

To that end, the associations are supporting the TTIP automotive talks through coordinated engagement with the American and EU negotiators.

"ACEA, AAPC and the Alliance are confident transatlantic automotive regulatory convergence will result in large economic gains for both economies," added ACEA.