Analysts LMC Automotive has updated its predictions, saying global light vehicle production is now expected to fall more than 20 percent to around 71 million units in 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and ensuing recession. That's down from its forecast last week of 90.4 million vehicles. Oops! Did the calculator batteries need replacing?
That steep decline, far greater than anticipated earlier this year, likely will cost global automakers 19 million units in lost production in 2020. LMC has now warned those projections could slip further, depending on how quickly major regions recover.
(Amazing how one week of further review can change the earlier forecasts)
The analyst said it expects vehicle sales will bottom out in April in North America and Europe, with post-pandemic recovery "unlikely to be rapid" in the coming months.
China, which was among the first countries hit by the novel coronavirus, already has restarted most of its auto plants and now expects to see a sales decline of just 12 percent this year, LMC said.
Expectations for a swift economic recovery have plummeted as the virus has swept across the globe, plunging all major regions into recession, according to researcher IHS Markit.
While IHS Markit expects to see the beginnings of an upturn by the end of the year, current projections "are likely to be revised down further" as the pandemic plays out.
Watch this space. Or, if you're suffering pandemic news overload, don't!