OBERPFAFFENHOFEN, Germany, Aug. 17 (UPI) -- Several European automakers are putting the brakes on planned rollouts for new models until the global economy improves, auto industry analysts said.
BMW AG, Fiat Group Automobiles SpA, Renault, Volvo and General Motors Corp. are among the companies holding off on new models, for now, Automotive News Europe reported Sunday.
Renault has halted development of its new crossover, and is delaying a new large minivan and top-line model. Likewise, General Motors Europe has shelved its updated Opel and Vauxhall models and apparently will not go forward now with a small Opel sports utility vehicle.
BMW, meanwhile, is holding off on a new sport utility vehicle model that was to target the Land Rover Range Rover. Volvo isn't going forward with its new C30 hatchback and Fiat likely will cut back its model development program, as well, industry insiders told Automotive News Europe.
Such cost-saving measures may only have a short-term benefit, however.
"If carmakers reduce product development, they will improve profitability for only a short time before customers demand more new products," said Ferdinand Dudenhoffer, head of the Center for Automotive Research in Germany.