BUDAPEST, Hungary -- Increased vehicle output by Mercedes-Benz and Audi is giving Hungary's economy a boost. Gross Domestic Product rose by 3.9 percent in the second quarter, the Hungarian Central Statistics Office said.
It was the biggest three month increase since the first three months of 2006, Hungary's Economy Ministry said.
Anticipating continued buoyancy, the Budapest-based statistics office said in an e-mailed statement that "growth in all likelihood will exceed 3 percent in 2014."
A major reason for the upsurge was a sharp rise in industrial output, up 11 percent in June, primarily because of increased production by carmakers.
Mercedes employs over 3,000 people at its factory in Kecskemet, Hungary, which opened in 2012 and produced more than 100,000 vehicles last year.
In May, Mercedes added a third shift at Kecskemet in response to strong international demand for the B class and CLA models made there.
Last month, Audi also added a third shift at its factory in Gyor, Hungary. The facility, which builds the TT Coupe and Roadster, A3 sedan and A3 convertible, has an annual capacity of 160,000 vehicles. Last year it produced 42,851 cars and 1.93 million engines, most of which were exported.
Audi has invested more than 900 million euros ($1.23 billion) in expanding the Gyor plant to cover the entire spectrum of production in a project that was completed last year. However, last month the European Commission said it had begun a probe into Hungarian state aid of 133 million toward this expansion to determine if it met EU rules on competition and regional development.
Bloomberg and Reuters contributed to this report