* Q1 adj EBIT around 1.2 bln euros vs poll avg 1.14 bln
* Q1 sales up 11.7 pct at 11 bln eur vs poll avg 10.6 bln
* Sticks with aim for 2017 adj EBIT margin above 10.5 pct
(Recasts, adds Q1 sales and margin figures)
FRANKFURT, April 28 German automotive supplier
Continental said it expected to comfortably reach its
financial targets for 2017 after its underlying earnings rose
faster than expected in the first quarter.
"Continental made a very good start to the new fiscal year
in a volatile environment," Chief Executive Elmar Degenhart said
in the statement on Friday, as the group published key quarterly
figures ahead of its annual general meeting in Hanover, Germany.
Its adjusted operating profit (EBIT) rose around 10 percent
to about 1.2 billion euros ($1.3 billion) in the three months
through March, beating the consensus forecast of 1.14 billion in
a Reuters poll of analysts.
Revenues were up almost 12 percent at 11 billion euros, also
beating consensus, and the margin stood at 10.7 percent.
Continental, which makes driver-assistance technology,
fuel-injection systems and vehicle tyres, has said it aims to
raise annual sales by more than 6 percent to over 43 billion
euros this year, despite rising raw material price, with a
margin on adjusted operating profit of more than 10.5 percent.
The group is bolstering its electronics expertise as
carmakers including Volkswagen and Ford raise
spending on battery-powered and driverless cars in response to
tougher anti-pollution rules and the emergence of new rivals
such as Google.
On Tuesday, Continental said it plans to invest an extra 300
million euros in electric drives by 2021 in a move that may
generate an additional 2 billion euros in sales by 2025.
Continental is due to publish full first-quarter earnings on
($1 = 0.9200 euros)
(Reporting by Andreas Cremer and Maria Sheahan; Editing by