The BMW Group has released results for 2017, reporting its best-ever figures to date for sales volume, revenues and earnings.
The year saw BMW make inroads into the EV market, delivering more than 100,000 electrified vehicles for the first time in a single year. The 65.6% increase in EV registrations will be seen by the firm as delivering on its ACES programme: Automated, Connected, Electrified and Services.
Harald Krüger, Chairman of the Board of Management of BMW AG in Munich said,
We can look back on the most successful year in our corporate history and have achieved record levels for revenues and earnings for the eighth year in succession. Since 2016, we have taken numerous strategic decisions to further grow our business on a sustainable basis in the years ahead.”
The group saw automotive sales volume increase by 4.1% to a new record level of 2,463,526 units in 2017 (2016: 2,367,603 units).
Revenues rose to a new record level of € 98,678 million in 2017, 4.% up on 2016. Group profit before tax (EBT) went up significantly year-on-year, recorded as a rise of 10.2% to € 10,655 million (2016: € 9,665 million).
Nicolas Peter, Member of the Board of Management of BMW AG responsible for Finance, commented, “Last year we allocated around one billion euros more on research and development than in 2016 – and nevertheless increased our operating profit. This is what we mean by sustained profitability.”
With the industry facing big changes in the short to medium term, BMW spend big on R&D in 2017. The Group raised research and development expenditure by 18.3% to € 6,108 million (2016: € 5,164 million).
Nicolas Peter continued, “In 2018, we expect the ratio to reach its highest level to date, with expenditure again rising by a further high three-digit million euro amount year-on-year. We need to earn these additional outlays by working with the utmost efficiency on the performance side while also maintaining a keen focus on the expenses side,” commented Peter.
The group’s sales volume rose by 4.2% to 2,088,283 units year-on-year (2016: 2,003,359 units). The BMW X was a big player in the group’s growth, with 9.6% more vehicles delivered to customers. Other models contributing to growth in 2017 included the BMW 1 Series (201,968 units; +14.7%) and the brand’s flagship BMW 7 Series (64,311 units; +4.5%).
The group saw 13.6% growth in Asian markets, with 848,826 BMW, MINI and Rolls-Royce brand vehicles sold. The Chinese market contributed 595,020 units to the total. In Europe, the BMW Group sold a total of 1,101,760 units across its three brands, thus remaining at the previous year’s high level (2016: 1,092,155 units; +0.9%). The sales volume figure of 241,674 units for Great Britain was down on the previous year (2016: 252,205 units; -4.2%).
BMW is targeting further growth in 2018 with the launch of the BMW Z4, and the BMW 8 Series. Harald Krüger concluded, “This year we are targeting another new sales record, with deliveries slightly up on the previous year.”