Daimler’s market leading trucks business aims to halt its losses soon even though the global market shows no signs of a quick rebound, division head Andreas Renschler has said.

“Our goal is to not lose any more money at the current market level,” he told Reuters. The unit lost EUR508m (US$723.7m) before interest and tax in the second quarter as the truck market remained slow.

“We expect that the market plunge has now mostly ended,” he said, although he took a wary view of how quickly demand will pick up again.

“In Europe, Japan and North America we will probably see the level reached in 2009 in the following year as well,” he said. Only in the United States was there a chance that market growth could hit 5% “or even slightly more” by the end of 2010.

“In our case truck orders run around six to nine months ahead of the business cycle. We do not see any signs at this stage that the crisis is over,” he said.

Orders for Daimler trucks fell 59% in the first half to over 95,000 units. City bus capacity is nearly booked out this year, though.

Renschler told the news agency state aid along the lines of ‘cash for clunkers’ incentives would not help truckmakers because customers simply did not have enough freight to move. Instead, the sector had to keep a tight lid on costs until the economy improved.