Will electrification drive the growth of the automotive industry in the coming years? What is the role of digital communication channels in consumer education? Is the metaverse the next big thing in the industry?
Further, brands are investing in their digital presence and in digitizing the buying process, and some of them have started to establish their presence in the metaverse.
A marginal increase of 1.4% in passenger car sales in the Greek market in the period January-September 2022 (82,938) compared to the same period in 2021 (81. 756), according to primary data from the Hellenic Statistical Authority, processed by the Association of Automobile Dealers’ Importers. The share of petrol-powered vehicles in September 22 reached 46% of registrations, up from 51% in 2021. In contrast, Hybrid Vehicles (HEV) increased to 27.5% in 2022 from 22.4% in 2021 and Rechargeable Vehicles (BEV-PHEV) to 7.1% in 2022 from 5.9% in 21. A decline in Diesel vehicles to 16% in 2022 from 17.8% in 2021.
A contraction in the EU car market of more than 25% compared to pre-pandemic levels in 2019 is forecast by the European Automobile Manufacturers Association for this year. “Recent years have been marked by major events such as Brexit, the coronavirus pandemic, the semiconductor shortage crisis and the war in Ukraine, with its impact on prices and energy availability,” commented ACEA President and BMW CEO Oliver Zipse. The impact of all these challenges is reflected in the development of car sales in the EU. Thus, in the first eight months of the year, total sales volumes experienced a decline of around 12% to 6 million new cars.
Until recently, the market has been constrained on the supply side as ongoing component shortages have limited production volumes. Demand is also being constrained largely due to inflation and fears of a recession, according to Automobile Manufacturers Association. With all these factors in mind, the same organization has revised its original forecast that the car market will return to growth later this year and expects it to contract again this year, with sales down 1%, reaching 9.6 million units. Compared to pre-pandemic figures, the drop in car sales is as much as 26% in just three years.
Konstantinos Diamantis, Director of Corporate Communications at BMW Group Hellas, predicts no improvement of the raw material shortage in the coming period: ‘The biggest challenge that the automotive industry had to face this year, due to the Ukraine-Russia war, was the shortage of raw materials for car production. As a result, there were delays in production and consequently in the delivery of new models to our customers. The BMW Group immediately readjusted production volumes at its plants around the world and made appropriate use of its flexible network of suppliers in other regions outside Europe, such as Latin America and Asia. In this way, we were able to drastically reduce waiting times for ordered cars in Greece as well. I estimate that there will be no substantial improvement in the coming months as the situation between supply and demand for new models has not yet stabilized.”