Export markets drive UK car manufacturing

Posted on 11 Jan 2018 and read 518 times
Export markets drive UK car manufacturingUK car manufacturing fell by 4.6% in November (compared with November 2016), according to the latest figures released by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) (www.smmt.co.uk).

These show that 161,490 cars left British factories in November, with overseas orders up 1.3% (compared with the same month a year earlier) and taking 85% of overall production.

That said, production for the home market continued to falter, falling for the fourth month in a row; it dropped by 28.1% compared with November 2016 — the largest decline in 2017.

In the first 11 months of 2017, more than 1.5 million cars rolled off UK production lines, with nearly eight out of 10 destined for one of 160 global markets.

Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive, said: “Brexit uncertainty, coupled with confusion over diesel taxation and air quality plans, continues to impact the domestic demand for new cars; and while it was good to see exports grow in November, this only reinforces how overseas demand remains the driving force for UK car manufacturing.”

Meanwhile, British engine manufacturing grew by 11.4% in November to 279,532 units, with domestic and export demand up by 20.8% and 4.0% respectively.

In the first 11 months of 2017, more than 2.5 million engines were made on UK production lines. Mr Hawes said: “2017 was a very robust year for UK engine manufacturing, with huge investments in new facilities and engine models delivering impressive dividends both at home and overseas.”

However, UK commercial-vehicle manufacturing fell by 34.6% in November, with 6,312 vans, trucks, buses and coaches leaving production lines in November.

Domestic demand fell by 16.8%, echoing recent declines in UK commercial-vehicle registrations. Meanwhile, demand from overseas markets declined by 40.7%, although the proportion of CVs built for export remained high at 67.5%.

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