Hyundai Motor lowered its global forecast for automobile sales this year because of the worsening outlook for demand in Europe and China.
South Korea’s largest carmaker cut its forecast for global sales by all automakers to 77.1 million units for the year, down from its April estimate of 77.6 million.
Chief Financial Officer Lee Won Hee said European demand will fall to about 6.43 million vehicles in the second half after about 7.65 million units were sold in the first six months this year, as many of its individual economies sink into recession.
“The economic situation in Europe will worsen in the second half of this year,” Lee said in a conference call in Seoul. “Still, Hyundai will be able to meet the global sales target we set earlier this year.”
Lee said Hyundai may even slightly outdo its goal as new or upgraded vehicles are scheduled to be released in key markets.
Hyundai is scheduled to start sales of a new sports utility vehicle in China later this month to tap that high-demand niche and to offset the decline in demand for other models. It is set to complete a new factory in Brazil in November as part of its expansion in South America.