How bad are things on the world automotive stage? Pretty awful, right?
The U.S. is the only bright spot in a global industry filled with turmoil. At least that's how Americans tend to view the situation.
But here in Germany things don't look so bleak.
"There is always some part of the world where you have headwinds," said Peter Schwarzenbauer, BMW board member in charge of Mini and Rolls-Royce. "But Europe is doing quite well, it is recovering.
"Actually," Schwarzenbauer considered, "the world automotive industry is doing quite well, with the exception that we have a little bit less growth in China."
And Schwarzenbauer doesn't sound overly concerned about China.
"Sometimes people say it's a crisis in China," he said. "I'm sorry, it's just normalizing the growth -- getting away from the plus-20 percent growth.
"People forget -- right now it's only 4 or 5 percent growth, but that's an explosion when you are a market of 20 million cars already. So China will remain a market with big opportunities."
Masahiro Moro, Mazda's head of global sales and marketing, is wary but still wowed by the size of China's automotive industry.
"You never know about China," Moro said. "It's not a democracy and they have a different system for managing the country. But my worry is not necessarily that the Chinese automotive industry will slow down. They sell 25 million units [including commercial vehicles] and they are marching towards 30 million. It's huge. "
The problem is that a slight twinge in China's economy is felt so acutely everywhere else.
"Natural resources consumption will go down, oil prices will get lower and everybody will be worried about stock prices," Moro said.
"But I believe China's government is capable of managing the situation. They did a great job when we had the world banking crisis in 2009. Their economy is just a little overcooked right now."