European vehicle production will decline by 1.6% in 2011 according to the latest forecasts issued by JD Power Automotive Forecasting. However, the good news is that the latest output data shows an improving trend with stocks wound down.

JD Power's forecasting unit says that light vehicle production in Europe this year will turn out at 19m units, some 13.7% ahead of last year.

BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Nissan (UK) have announced additional build over the traditional Christmas shutdown period and this would suggest a good order bank and possibly tight stocks on entering into 2011, JD Power says.

However, the company notes that some manufacturers are faring less well and their analysis suggests that build in the next two quarters will fall back year-on-year, to leave the 2011 total a shade down on 2010 (-1.6% to 18.7m units).
 
JD Power analyst Arthur Maher told just-auto that an analysis of stocks suggests the industry has now reached a 'balanced position'. “A balanced stocks position is actually one of the biggest positives since the financial crisis erupted,” he said.

“And another positive for the sector remains improving export volumes.”

Maher doesn't rule out a double-dip recession and says that in a more pessimistic scenario that JD Power has developed, European build would fall back by 8.6% in 2011.

DETAILED DATA REPORTS AVAILABLE: JD Power's monthly data for European passenger car production by vehicle manufacturing group, brand and model is now available exclusively through just-auto.

An annual subscription to the detailed monthly data can be purchased through our store.

JD Power Automotive Forecasting provides a monthly update for European Passenger Car Production history, using the latest actual data and estimates. An annual subscription provides you with immediate access to the current edition, plus 11 further monthly updates.

Detailed production numbers are shown for the latest month and year-to-date, for both the current year and previous year for comparison. Model line detail is provided every month.

JD Power's Estimated Pan-European Passenger Car Assembly by Model (annual subscription)

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