Europcar, Europe's leading car rental company and owned by German carmaker Volkswagen, announced it would strike new territory by tackling the industry's largest market, the United States. General Director Salvatore Catania said in Paris on Monday that the company had again achieved record growth in 2004, with pre-tax profits up 16 percent to €84 million ($110.7 million), a Europcar record. Turnover in 2004 rose by 6 percent to around €1.2 billion. Catania said the company aimed for pre-tax profits to surpass €100 million in 2005, and that Europcar would enter the US as well as the Chinese markets. He suggested the company might get its start in the US by acquiring other car rental firms.