Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

BMW: Covid-19 will slow car industry ‘for quite some time’

BMW expects profits to fall in the first half (David Cheskin/AP)
BMW expects profits to fall in the first half (David Cheskin/AP)

Car maker BMW warned the industry would be held back by the coronavirus outbreak “for quite some time to come” as it posted first-quarter results.

Net profit fell slightly in Q1 from a year earlier, when the company had a large one-time expense.

The company said it expected earnings to deteriorate during the first half of this year due to the coronavirus lockdowns.

The firm said it remained financially solid with 19 billion euros (£16.5 billion) in cash at the end of the first quarter.

Net profit fell 2.4% to 574 million euros (£497 million) in the first three months of the year, down from 588 million euros (£509 million) in the first quarter of 2019, the company said.

The year-earlier figure was lowered by a 1.4-billion euro (£1.2 billion) charge stemming from a European Union anti-trust case.

Car sales fell 21% in the quarter as first China and then Europe and the United States saw dealerships close during the outbreak.

Earnings were supported by a favourable product mix in which vehicles with higher profit margins dominated.

It said sales this year would be substantially below last year and that a quick recovery “is unlikely” as the situation would only begin to stabilise in the third quarter.

The company said it expected profit margins of 0%-3% for the full year, reduced from an earlier outlook of 2%-4%.