FRANKFURT, March 18 (Reuters) - BMW said its pretax profit and vehicle deliveries will drop significantly this year as coronavirus spreads. This, combined with higher research and development spending, will lead to a lower operating profit margin in its automotive segment, it said.
BMW said the current uncertainty regarding the further global spread and the effects of coronavirus makes it difficult to provide an accurate forecast for 2020.
BMW Group expects the pandemic and the required containment measures to have a negative impact on delivery volumes in all major markets over the year 2020 as a whole.
“Group profit before tax is expected to be significantly lower than in 2019, BMW said in a statement on Wednesday.
Based on the latest forecast, the EBIT margin of the Automotive segment is therefore expected to lie within a range of between 2% and 4%, it said. (Reporting by Edward Taylor Editing by Michelle Martin)