Global light vehicle output depressed but forecast to grow in 2022

The latest global light vehicle manufacturing forecast from GlobalData unit LMC Automotive shows growth in 2022, despite a worsening outlook for the global economy and the continuing adverse impacts of war in Ukraine.

GlobalData forecasts global market growth of 4.2% to 80.1 million units in 2022.

LMC analysts say that although there are negative factors at work and economic conditions are worsening in many markets, the supply constraints caused by the semiconductors shortage mean long waiting lists and still unsatisfied demand. Indeed, they estimate that real demand in Western Europe and North America is still far higher than the current level of vehicle sales – possibly by as much as 10-15%.

They also note that new incentives in China will boost sales there in the second half of the year.    

Furthermore, the parts shortages should ease later in the year, leading to more fulfilment of backed up orders. Indeed, inventories of auto-grade semiconductors are increasing in China – one possible early sign of easing of shortage.

However, a global light vehicle market in the region of 80.1 million this year would still be almost 10% below pre-pandemic 2019’s total of 88.8 million units.

Regionally, most regions across the globe show some growth in the 2022 projections, but Eastern Europe bucks the overall growth trend, with a loss of over 800,000 units, mainly due to much lower sales in Russia due to adverse impacts of the war in Ukraine on the Russian economy and automotive supply chains.

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