News: Daimler has unveiled a new assembly plant building automatic transmissions for Mercedes-Benz luxury cars in Sebes, Romania, ACTmedia reports. The German carmaker is said to be investing US$39.6mn in the facility, which covers 9,000 square metres and is expected to create 250 jobs. The move comes after Daimler announced its intentions to invest more than US$390mn in increasing production capacity in Romania. The expansion is partly due to necessity, as Daimler's transmission plant in Stuttgart-Hedelfingen is currently running at full capacity and cannot be expanded further.
BMI View: In the first four months of 2013, passenger car sales in Romania decreased 9.8% y-o-y, to 16,475 units. BMI maintains a particularly bearish outlook for GDP growth in Romania, and private consumption more specifically, and we forecast an 8% decline over the year.