How Low-cost Dacia Conquered Europe, By Accident
The Swedish rock band celebrated this event together with 30,000 fans at the prestigious Sweden Rock Festival. Europe performed 28 songs, selecting their personal favourite moments spanning from their earlier years up to their most recent songs taken from albums including Last Look AtEden and Bag Of Bones; plus songs performed for the very first time. Described as a greatest hits extravaganza, Europe’s headline festival performance also displayed it’s more soulful moments, especially when the band sat down to perform an emotional acoustic set. This segment of the concert gave the massive festival atmosphere an intimate club feeling before Europe returned to perform the hard rock anthems their fans have grown to love and cherish. To pay tribute to some of their biggest rock heroes, Europe invited two very special guests to perform with them – Scott Gorham (Thin Lizzy) for an electrifying version of Jailbreak and Michael Schenker (MSG, ex-UFO and Scorpions) for their tribute to UFO’s classicLights Out. The set list is full of treasures and surprises. Europe were determined to celebrate and enjoy their long record of hit singles including Carrie, Rock The Night, Superstitious,Open Your Heart, Last Look At Eden, Prisoners in Paradise, New Love In Town and, of course, the ever-present and always electrifying iconic rock anthem The Final Countdown. Clocking in over 2 hours, 40 minutes of footage, and filmed with state-of-the-art hi def cameras, the concert features behind-the-scenes material, plus an exclusive interview with the band, making “Live At Sweden Rock – 30th Anniversary Show” the definitive Europe live experience! Track Listing: 1. Intro / Riches To Rags 2. Firebox 3.
Europe Premieres ‘The Final Countdown ‘LIVE’ from Sweden Rock’
Really low-cost cars in some cases, 50 percent cheaper than rival models. In recession-hit Europe, Dacia is bucking the region’s sliding sales: In the first half of this year, the company sold 141,278 passenger cars in the EU, 17.6 percent more than it sold during the same period last year. That’s the biggest percentage increase in Europe, an impressive result in a market that fell 6.6 percent in that period, according to data from the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association. Dacia’s success isn’t just related to the worst car market Europe has experienced in decades. Analysts say the company was thriving even before the crisis simply because they have no competition. “Historically, doing a low-cost car is something that nobody wants to do,” said analyst Carlos Da Silva of IHS Automotive. “Intellectually, culturally, nobody was prepared to do it” because the culture of car companies is driven by engineers, and engineers want to perpetually innovate. Building a low-cost car requires a different kind of thinking.” Renault took over the Dacia brand in the 1990s with the intention of building a car for central and eastern Europe, essentially building a better Lada, the Russian clunkers that dominated the market in the Eastern Bloc. On a whim, the Dacias were also tested in western Europe and started selling well. Dacia is still small, representing just 2.5 percent of the European market, but Da Silva says it is buoying its parent company, Renault. Dacias rely on Renault parts and the cars sell under the Renault brand in places like Argentina, Brazil and Russia. In the same January-to-June period that Dacia was doing well, Renault sales fell 10.4 percent. Renault’s first-half earnings were just 39 million euros, and its car-making operations lost money last year. Dacia “already saved the company, I think,” said Da Silva. At the Frankfurt Auto Show this week, Dacia unveiled a redesign of its Duster SUV a car targeted at the growing middle class in emerging markets. The Duster starts at 10,490 euros ($13,900). By contrast, Renault’s SUV, the Koleos, starts at 28,490 euros.
Europe’s carmakers warn of more cuts in weak recovery
Volkswagen (VW) chief Martin Winterkorn said the European industry could do with closing around 10 factories, although he stressed the German carmaker itself did not need to make cuts thanks to strong growth in the United States, China and Russia. “Europe still has to be viewed with skepticism,” he said, adding sales across the region were down about 3-3.5 million since 2007. “Basically, it’s 10 factories that could be closed … Thank God there are other areas we have growth,” he added. Peugeot, which lost 5 billion euros last year and clung to life with a share issue and French bailout, is more exposed to weaker southern European markets than many rivals, and also has less of a presence in the more robust luxury car segment. Its CEO, Philippe Varin, said shutting down more production lines were “exactly the discussion we are having”, but added he would present any cutbacks to unions before announcing details. Unions reacted with surprise. “Downsizing has already happened as far as I’m concerned, so I’m astonished that it’s coming up again,” said Franck Don, an official with the moderate CFTC union. “PROBLEM CHILD” Despite signs of improvement in the euro zone economy, car sales fell in Germany, France, Italy and Spain in August, casting doubt over consumers’ willingness to spend amid record high unemployment. Varin said Peugeot’s orders had stabilized so far this month and predicted Europe would return to “slightly positive growth” in 2014. That helped to drive Peugeot’s shares more than 4 percent higher, as traders scrambled to unwind their bets against the company.