The current financial havoc in Greece has created great uncertainty, leading the country’s primary consumers to postpone many of their purchasing decisions, such as buying a new car.
As a result, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and PSA Peugeot Citroën, being the most exposed car manufacturers to the Greek, Italian and Spanish markets, are feeling uncomfortable in front of an endless wait-and-see Grexit scenario. Volkswagen Group does not seem to be seriously affected as its exposure to Greece and other southern European countries is estimated at just 5.2%.
The situation in Europe has been unclear not just to Greek consumers but to the rest of the euro-countries’ citizens as well, leading to a 20-year low in automobile sales in 2013. The next year though, sales steadily rebounded with a 5.4% increase.
Although the European car market’s concern about a potential Grexit is serious, the damage may be minor taking into account that during 2014, only about 71,000 new cars were registered in Greece compared to 1.36 million in Italy, 855,000 in Spain, and approximately 143,000 in Portugal.
Only if some of the rest of the European countries choose to follow Greece’s example, asking for a less austere rescue plan, a dangerous turmoil could burst out affecting Germany, Europe’s largest market.
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