Brazil, South America’s largest vehicle market, saw a strong year in 2005, setting a number of records despite struggles with free-trade talks, high interest rates and the strengthening of the real, Brazil’s currency, which squeezed profits on exports. The country sold 1.72 million vehicles in 2005, an 8.6% gain on prior-year’s 1.58 million deliveries. Brazil’s leading auto manufacturers, buoyant from the successful year, predict sales of 1.84 million vehicles for 2006 and production of ...

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