Automakers welcomed a post-Brexit trade deal agreed between the UK and the European Union that was finalized on Christmas Eve, days before Britain is due to leave the bloc's single market.
The accord will complete UK's separation from the EU and averts the threat of an acrimonious breakup on Jan. 31, when a 12-month transition period ends.
ACEA, the European auto industry's lobbying group, said the agreement will allow the sector to avoid the "catastrophic" effect of a chaotic Brexit.
"The impact of a no-deal Brexit on the EU auto industry would have been simply devastating," ACEA Director General Eric-Mark Huitem said in statement.
The agreement will allow for tariff- and quota-free trade of goods after Dec. 31, but will not apply to the services industry -- about 80 percent of the UK economy -- or the financial services sector.
It ends uncertainty that started for automakers with UK operations when Britain voted to leave the EU in 2016. Nissan, Toyota and Honda, which collectively build nearly half of the cars produced in the UK, had warned they would have to leave Britain if trade barriers after Brexit made their UK operations unprofitable.