A Mercedes-Benz Vision AVTR concept vehicle is displayed during a media day for the Auto Shanghai show in Shanghai, China April 19, 2021. REUTERS/Aly Song/File Photo

LONDON, July 21 (Reuters) – A global shortage of semiconductor chips will dent car sales in the second half of 2021, Mercedes-Benz maker Daimler AG (DAIGn.DE) said on Wednesday, but left unchanged its profit margin outlook for the year.

Daimler is among the major carmakers that have had to cut back production this year because of the shortage spurred by the coronavirus pandemic.

The shortage comes as demand for cars has spiked during the global economy’s recovery from the ravages of COVID-19, sending up prices of both new and used vehicles as inventories shrink.

Mercedes-Benz car sales in the second quarter jumped 27%, with a 54% jump in Europe, Daimler’s second market after China.

The company said it now expects full-year car sales to be in line with 2020 levels. Previously the German carmaker had said it expected car unit sales this year to be significantly above last year’s.

The company also confirmed on Wednesday that second-quarter adjusted group earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) were 5.42 billion euros ($6.38 billion), with car and truck divisions beating analyst targets.

Daimler reported preliminary results last week. read more

($1=0.8495 euros)

Reporting by Nick Carey, Editing by Douglas Busvine and Clarence Fernandez

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