UK specialist car makers to enjoy a 60% boost

Posted on 08 Nov 2017 and read 476 times
UK specialist car makers to enjoy a 60% boostThe UK’s specialist low-volume car-manufacturing industry is set to enjoy a 60% production boost by 2020, thanks to increasing global demand, according to new analysis published by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) (

The UK Specialist Car Manufacturers Report 2017 confirms that Britain is home to the largest and most diverse specialist-car-manufacturing sector in the world, with some iconic brands producing a wide range of cutting-edge products — from high-performance sports cars, luxury grand tourers and SUVs to electric taxis and wheelchair-accessible vehicles.

Figures show that these car makers turned over £3.6 billion in 2016, up 52% from 2012, and employed 11,250 people (most in highly skilled specialist roles).

Moreover, these manufacturers are said to support tens of thousands of additional jobs across the supply chain. Their output has risen by 25% since 2012 and is forecast to increase by a further 60% by 2020 — from the current 32,000 units last year to about 52,000.

Some 65% of the vehicles that this sector produces are exported to markets world-wide, including the EU, the USA, China, Japan and the Gulf states.

This sector also supports a diverse UK supply chain, sourcing about 65% of its vehicle content from local Tier One companies and a further 30% from across the wider EU.

Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive, said: “Our specialist-car-manufacturing sector is one of the UK’s global success stories — making world-leading products and pioneering next-generation technologies that benefit everyone.

"For this to continue, we need certainty on Britain’s future trading relationships, including customs plans, market access, regulations governing the design, production and approval of vehicles, and rules around the movement of skilled workers.

"This will provide the assurance the sector needs to remain competitive and make investment decisions that enable it to continue to develop innovative products.”

The sector’s current growth forecast is based on increasing demand from consumers in key global markets, but also previously announced investment in new facilities from the likes of Aston Martin and London Electric Vehicle Co — formerly London Taxis — plus new entrants such as Alcraft and TVR.

Aston Martin and TVR are establishing new manufacturing facilities in Wales, with an SUV from Aston Martin and a new sports car from TVR both starting production in 2019 — the same year that the new McLaren Composites Technology Centre in Rotherham will start building carbon-fibre chassis for future products.

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