According to statistics issued by the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM), China’s auto production increased by 9.3% to 10,751,683 units in the period January to June 2013 compared with the same period last year. Passenger cars made up 8,665,128 of the total. Vehicle sales in the six month increased by 12.3% to 10,782,270 units.
In Japan vehicle production fell by 11.2% in the first five months of 2013 to 3,866,301 units of which 3,289,089 units were passenger cars. Vehicle production in Korea during the first half of the year shrank by 4.3% to 2,279,790 units with around 75% of output destined for export. First-half year exports were down 6.7% to 1,587,273 units.
Vehicle production continued to climb in North America in the first six months of 2013, albeit at a slower rate than in 2012. Total vehicle output in the USA, Canada and Mexico increased by 3.2% in the period to reach 8,417,542 units. Of this, USA vehicle production increased by 5.4% to 5,665,485 units and Mexico increased by 4.4% to 1,546,243 units; however, Canada went into reverse by decreasing vehicle production by 6.8% to 1,205,614 units. In South America, Brazil which is now the world’s fourth largest car market, saw vehicle production shoot up by 18.1% in the first half of 2013 to reach 1.86 million units.
The economic recession in the Eurozone continues to weigh heavily on consumer demand for cars with new car registrations down 6.6% in the EU in the first six months to 6,204,990 units compared with the same period in 2012. Most of the major markets except the United Kingdom saw downturns with Spain -4.9%, Germany -8.1%, Italy -10.3%, and France -11.2%. The UK car market expanded by 10% in the period.
The global powder metallurgy industry supplies on average around 75% of its production to the automotive sector.