BERLIN, March 15 (Reuters) – BMW forecast on Wednesday an 8% to 10% margin for its autos segment in 2023, up from last year’s 7% to 9% target, and said it planned to keep prices stable, after years of dealing with rising costs by passing them on to customers.
The transition to battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) was moving faster than planned and it expected to reach its target of over 50% battery-electric vehicle share well ahead of its 2030 target, the company said.
It forecast that the speed of growth in BEV sales, which doubled to more than 215,000 in 2022, to slow slightly this year to a high double-digit percentage.
But by 2025, one in four new sales should be battery-electric, rising to one in three by 2026, according to Wednesday’s forecast – a big leap from the one in 11 ratio seen last year.
The company, long the most prominent advocate among German car makers of hydrogen fuel cell technology as an alternative worth offering alongside battery-powered cars, said it could envision a hydrogen-powered vehicle going into production by mid-decade.
The BMW iX5 Hydrogen* test vehicle, with a range of 500 km (310 miles) and an ability to refuel in three to four minutes, was being tested in various countries, it said.
The carmaker confirmed preliminary results released last week for 2022, including an 8.6% margin in the autos business on earnings before interest and tax of 10.6 billion euros and cash flow of 11.1 billion euros.
Almost half of cash flow came from a cash contribution from Chinese joint venture BMW Brilliance Automotive.
BMW proposed a dividend to shareholders of 8.50 euros, up from 5.80 a year earlier.