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Carmakers: Overview


(CNN) -- The European car industry has long been the domain of the mass producers -- General Motors, through its Vauxhall and Opel brands, and Ford.

But as consumers have become more affluent, Detroit's big two have taken to buying premium car manufacturers.

Ford now owns the indestructible, safety-conscious Swedish brand Volvo, British supercar manufacturer Aston Martin, Land Rover and Jaguar. GM has plonked for Saab.

Two European manufacturers are ranked among the world's top five carmakers. Volkswagen is the world's third-largest carmaker, while Daimler though its acquisition of the U.S.'s Chrysler straddles the fifth spot.

But sluggish economic growth across the region and high unemployment in France and Germany have meant falling car sales.

Analysts expect car sales to fall about 5 percent for 2002, but luxury carmaker BMW has continued to win customers with its premium brand, while Peugeot has rolled out new models.

Click on the links to learn more about each carmaker

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