Sector - Fleet

UK car production reaches highest level for 17 years

UK car production reaches highest level since 1999, with over 1.6M cars built this year.

According to the latest statistics from the Society of Motor Manufacturing and Traders (SMMT), the auto motive sector is having the best year for car production since 1999.

Over 1.6M cars were built this year, with over 80% destined for overseas markets. Almost 170,000 vehicles were built last month (November 2016), nearly 13% higher than the same period last year.

Reacting to the news, Business and Energy Secretary Greg Clark said: “Our car manufacturing industry is going from strength to strength and today’s figures are further proof of this. With production reaching its highest level this century and exports up again, there is no better time to thank our hard working men and women across the auto sector who have made this possible.

“This government continues to back the UK auto sector and recently we announced a further £390M investment in the next generation of electric and autonomous cars. We are working closely with the SMMT, and others, on building an Industrial Strategy that will further upgrade our competitiveness, productivity and create high skilled jobs.”

The UK auto sector has been boosted by Nissan’s decision to build its next generation Qashqai and X-trail at its plant in Sunderland. This decision saved secured thousands of jobs both at Nissan and across the supply chain.

The government are backing the automotive industry, with more changes in the next ten years than in the last 100. A total of £390M in funding was announced in the Autumn Statement, that will be invested to further develop cleaner, connected and autonomous vehicles, strengthening the UK’s position as a leader in the this vital sector.

Climate Change and Industry Minister Nick Hurd joined the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, David Davis, at a recent roundtable with the top auto companies to listen to their views on Brexit negotiations. Mr Davis reaffirmed the importance the government places on the UK’s world leading automotive industry and we will continue to engage with them, and the SMMT, as we develop our comprehensive Industrial Strategy.