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NINETY EIGHT REGENCY

BMW cautious on sales target despite early jump

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BMW cautious on sales target despite early jump

June 24, 2010 06:01 CET

BILBAO, Spain (Reuters) – BMW AG is sticking to a "single digit" percent 2010 sales growth forecast, despite outperforming in the first five months, as tougher comparatives and global fiscal changes kick in.

"We're still cautious on the basis that the first five months were 14-15 percent growth, but of course the second six months are year-over-year comparisons when things were starting to recover during 2009," head of sales and marketing Ian Robertson said.

Speaking on the sidelines of the Automotive News Congress in Bilbao, Robertson added: "There are many governments around the world who at the moment are implementing fiscal changes, so I think the market position could change as well."

Asked for a reaction to China's new currency flexibility, Robertson said the company was focusing on increasing its natural hedging around the world.

"Currency is much more volatile than it ever was. We've seen dramatic shifts between the euro and the dollar in recent years," Robertson said. "The only real solution here is to invest and manufacture and buy components in the currencies where we sell cars."

BMW is making good progress in China, Robertson said. In April it raised its China sales forecast.

The group is also expanding its U.S. production and will become the biggest exporter of cars from that market, Robertson said.

Read more: http://www.autonews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20100624/ANE/306239940/1317#ixzz0rmdl0Cfa

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