UK automotive production up 1.2% in Jan despite holidays

Posted on 21 Feb 2013 by Tim Brown

UK car manufacturing grew slightly in January, up a modest 1.2% on the same period in 2012 with a total of 129,049 cars produced in the UK in January 2013.

“Output is typically subdued in January as manufacturers extend holiday periods to upgrade plants and re-tool for new models,” said Mike Baunton, SMMT Interim Chief Executive.

“Despite ongoing economic challenges, growing demand for UK-built products in emerging global markets coupled with major new investment is paving the way for a positive year for automotive manufacturing,” he said.

Commercial vehicle production, however, fell 20.5% last month to 7,822. The SMMT warned that CV falls can be expected throughout 2013 as Ford scales back its manufacturing.

“UK registrations of trucks were strong through most of 2012, but dropped off in the final quarter, impacting output,” said Mr Baunton. “However, domestic demand for buses and coaches grew significantly through 2012 on the back of Government incentives and a wider focus on public transport.”

UK engine production also declined with a 5.1% drop in January to 219,757 units. The UK manufacturers make some 2.5 million petrol and diesel engines each year but exports have declined 9.5% year on year while the home market grew 2.8% in the last 12 months.

Well known for its strong use of automation, the automotive industry will be represented by tractor manufacturer CNH at The Manufacturer’s Automate UK event to be held next week in London on Feb 26. The event will help you understand how cost and time efficiencies can be achieved through automation, how to effectively finance implementation and what human capital changes are required. For more information visit