FRANKFURT May 6 German luxury car maker BMW AG
reiterated its ambitious 2014 goals as first quarter
operating profit rose 2.6 percent, in-line with forecasts,
helped by a 12.1 percent rise in sales of BMW cars.
BMW is investing to expand production capacity and its model
range to retain the crown of biggest selling luxury carmaker
ahead of Audi and Mercedes, but spending hit earnings before
interest and tax, which came in at 2.09 billion euros, just
above the 2.05 billion euros ($2.83 billion) average forecast in
a Reuters poll.
BMW's automotive EBIT margin, the best gauge to compare
profitability with peers, was 9.5 percent in the quarter, higher
than the 7 percent achieved by rival Mercedes-Benz Cars but
short of the 10.1 percent achieved by Audi.
Munich-based BMW reiterated its aim to achieve a significant
rise in sales volume in 2014 to 2 million cars or more, after it
delivered a record 1.96 million Mini, Rolls Royce and BMW cars
BMW also targets a rise in pre-tax profits of up to 10
percent for 2014.
(Reporting by Edward Taylor; Editing by Jonathan Gould)