* Q3 oper. profit 86 mln eur vs. 82 mln year-ago
* Keeps FY profit, sales guidance
* Restructuring costs, Brazil downturn weigh on results (Adds CEO comment, earnings detail and background)
BERLIN, Oct 27 (Reuters) - Germany’s MAN SE posted higher third-quarter profit helped by pent-up heavy truck demand in Europe, while restructuring costs stopped weighing on results.
Heavy-truck sales in Europe, the core market of MAN’s truck & bus division accounting for two-thirds of group sales, jumped 21 percent between July and September to 62,220 vehicles, the European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA) said on Tuesday.
Truck sales were subdued in Europe in 2014 after new emissions rules came into force, making purchases more expensive. As a result, many companies now have ageing fleets they need to refresh.
Operating profit at Volkswagen-owned MAN rose 5 percent to 86 million euros ($95 million), following a 19-million euro loss in the second quarter when MAN had to digest 170 million euros of costs to restructure European truck production.
Full-year operating profit at MAN will be “significantly hit” by restructuring costs and plunging truck demand in Brazil while sales will drop slightly below year-ago levels, the company said, keeping to its July guidance.
MAN is more exposed than rivals Daimler and Volvo to problems in Brazil, where it has been market leader for trucks weighing more than 5 metric tonnes for over a decade. It lacks a presence in the growing North American market.
“The good news is we are seeing a noticeable recovery in the European commercial vehicles market,” MAN SE Chief Executive Joachim Drees said. “However, the situation in other regions such as Brazil or Russia remains tense.”
Parent VW is due to publish quarterly results on Wednesday. ($1 = 0.9046 euros) (Reporting by Andreas Cremer; Editing by Georgina Prodhan)