According to a study, the global auto industry made more money operationally in the first half of this year than ever before in the history of the industry.

According to a survey by the consulting firm EY, the 16 largest car companies made operating profits totaling 71.5 billion euros between January and the end of June - a record figure.

In the previous year, in the same period of time, according to the study presented on Tuesday, the companies had a total loss of 4.1 billion euros.

At that time, with the beginning of the Corona crisis, global supply chains and demand collapsed.

Noticeable: Most companies reported substantial operating profits, although global car sales and company sales were on average still below the pre-Corona level.

In the first half of the year, only 33.5 million vehicles were sold, eleven percent less than in the first half of 2019. The revenues of the 16 largest car companies were also around 2 percent below the comparable value of 2019 at 809 billion euros.

Trend towards expensive models

EY industry expert Peter Fuß said that the companies had mainly benefited from the austerity measures introduced during the Corona crisis and from the trend towards expensive and large models. In addition, the current global shortage of chips with high demand for cars has created a favorable price environment. “The shortage of chips means that car companies are concentrating on high-margin vehicles and are less dependent on giving high discounts to boost business. At the moment the demand is greater than the supply - the industry knows how to take advantage of this situation. "

If you look at the margins, the German car manufacturers BMW and Daimler are in the lead, according to the study. The operating return on sales - in other words, what remains of the turnover as profit from the operating business - was 14.5 percent higher at BMW than at all other large car groups. Daimler (12.9 percent) follows in second place, the Volkswagen Group (8.8 percent) in sixth place. The return on sales is a measure of how profitably a company operates. The figures include not only the pure car business, but also all other activities of the 16 groups.