Tag Archives: UK Car exports

17 year high for British car manufacturing as global demand hits record levels

  • 7 million cars built in the UK in 2016, an increase of 8.5% and the highest output for 17 years.
  • Exports at record levels for second consecutive year as more than 1.35 million cars shipped worldwide.
  • More than one in two cars exported to Europe, our single biggest trading partner, with demand up 7.5%.
  • Growth driven by multi billion pound investments in previous years – not post Brexit bounce.

UK car production achieved a 17-year high in 2016, according to the latest figures published by SMMT. 1,722,698 vehicles rolled off production lines last year from some 15 manufacturers,1 an 8.5% uplift on total production in 2015 – and the highest output since 1999.2

More cars are now being exported from Britain than ever before, the result of investments made over recent years in world-class production facilities, cutting-edge design and technology and one of Europe’s most highly skilled and productive workforces. Ten brand new car models began production in the UK last year, nine of them from premium brands which has helped make the UK the second biggest producer of premium cars after Germany and the third biggest car producer in Europe.3  Total committed investment annoncements in the automotive sector in 2016 were approximately £1.66 billion across a number of companies. This figure is down from  £2.5 billion in 2015.

Production growth was predominantly driven by overseas demand, with global appetite for British-built cars rising by 10.3% to an all-time high of 1,354,216 – a second consecutive annual record. Around eight out of every 10 cars manufactured in the UK is now exported, bound for one of 160 markets worldwide.

It was continuing economic recovery across Europe, however, that accounted for the bulk of the growth. Exports to the rest of the EU grew 7.5% to 758,680 and accounted for more than half of all UK car exports. Furthermore, Europe supplies the majority of components within UK-built vehicles, underlining the critical importance of tariff and barrier-free trade to future UK automotive production.

Growth was strong across a number of markets, notably the US – the UK’s biggest export destination after the EU – where demand rose by almost half (47.2%) meaning it now accounts for around 14.5% of all UK car exports. Notable uplifts were also seen in Turkey, Japan and Canada whilst China, third on the list of export markets, grew by a more modest 3.1% with 88,610 vehicles exported last year.

Domestic demand for UK built cars also grew last year, up 2.4% in the year, and the UK remains the second largest car market in Europe, again after Germany.4 One in seven new cars registered by UK buyers is now made in Britain, up from one in eight three years ago.

Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive, said,

The tremendous growth in UK production is testament to the global competitiveness of the UK automotive sector. High class engineering, advanced technology and a workforce committed to quality have helped turn around the industry, making the UK among the most productive places in Europe to make cars. Significant investment in new plants and products over the past few years has driven this growth, not a post-Brexit bounce. We want trade deals but they must be the right deals, not rushed deals. Failure to do so could damage UK automotive manufacturing beyond repair.

  1. The UK’s 15 manufacturing plants are owned by a range of independent and multi-national-owned companies: Aston Martin (Gaydon); Bentley (Crewe); Caterham (Dartford); Honda (Swindon); Jaguar Land Rover (Castle Bromwich, Solihull, Halewood); Lotus (Norwich); McLaren (Woking); Mini (Oxford); Morgan (Malvern); Nissan (Sunderland); Rolls Royce (Goodwood); Toyota (Burnaston); Vauxhall (Ellesmere Port).
  2. 1,799,004 cars were produced in the UK in 1999.
  3. New UK models starting production in 2016: Aston Martin DB11; Bentley Bentayga; Jaguar F-Pace; Infiniti Q30; Infiniti QX30; Land Rover Range Rover Evoque Convertible; McLaren 540; McLaren 570; Rolls Royce Dawn; Vauxhall Astra Sports Tourer.
  4. ACEA data for 2016.

SMMT statement in response to the Prime Minister’s speech on Brexit

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SMMT has released a statement today, Tuesday 17 January 2017, in response to Prime Minister Theresa May’s speech on Brexit.

Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive, said,

The recognition by the Prime Minister of the importance of single market arrangements for the automotive sector is critical. We need government to deliver a deal which includes participation in the customs union to help safeguard EU trade, trade that is tariff-free and avoids the non-tariff and regulatory barriers that would jeopardise investment, growth and consumer choice. Achieving this will not be easy and we must, at all costs, avoid a cliff-edge and reversion to WTO tariffs, which would threaten the viability of the industry.

In December 2016 SMMT hosted a roundtable discussion chaired by David Davis, Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, on the future for the UK automotive sector following Brexit. The event took place at SMMT’s headquarters in London and was also attended by John Hayes, Minster of State, Department for Transport and Nick Hurd, Minister of State, Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy. You can read more about the discussion here.

Read more about the UK automotive sector’s relationship with Europe

Source: SMMT

 

Eight out of 10 cars shipped overseas in October as export growth drives UK production

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  • UK car manufacturing dips -1.0% in October to 151,795 units as domestic demand falls.
  • Exports rise for 15th consecutive month, with 122,765 cars built for overseas markets, up 1.7%.1
  • Industry remains strong, up 9.2% year-to-date with more than 1.4 million vehicles produced.

car-manufacturing-table-october-16

UK car manufacturing dipped -1.0% in October, ending a 14-month run of growth for the industry, according to figures published by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders.2

151,795 vehicles were built in the month, with production for export growing taking an 80.9% share of volumes. 122,765 cars were shipped to overseas customers, an uplift of 1.7% on the same month last year, and offsetting a -10.9% decline in production for the home market. Despite the fall, domestic demand remains strong, with production in the year so far up 3.3% and at its highest level since 2005.3 Overall production levels, meanwhile, achieved a 17 year record of 1,444,248 – up 9.2%.

Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive, said

October’s figures underline the export-led nature of the industry, with eight out of 10 cars built for overseas customers. Despite model changes which have ended the consistent growth pattern of the past year or so, we are still on track for a record number of exports.

Given this dependence on global trade, it is crucial that British-built cars remain attractive to international buyers and exports are not subject to additional tariffs, costs and other barriers to successful trade. It is also essential government ensures there is economic stability and a competitive business environment to ensure we continue to attract the global investment that is behind this performance.

car-output_rolling-year-totals-october-2016

  1. UK car export volumes have risen in every month since July 2015
  2. UK car manufacturing last fell in July 2015
  3. October 2005, when 363,513 units were produced for the domestic market

Source: SMMT

 

UK car manufacturing hits six-year high

Car production rose 3.1% in 2013 to surpass 1.5 million units – the highest volume since 2007.

  • Industry analysts predict output to reach record levels of around two million units by 2017.
  • UK could become the third largest car manufacturer in Europe.

Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive, said, “2013 demonstrated the value of the UK’s diverse car manufacturing industry, as surging home demand and robust exports outside Europe saw output grow 3.1% to over 1.5 million units. UK automotive investment announcements exceeded £2.5 billion in 2013, reinforcing industry analysts’ suggestions that the UK could break all-time car output records within the next four years.”


UK car manufacturing (selected years with AutoAnalysis forecasts 2014-2017)

Note: 1972 is currently the record year for car output (1.92 million cars)
Manufacturing graph 1

Business Secretary Vince Cable said, “Today’s figures are another sign that the British car industry is going from strength to strength – with one vehicle rolling off a production line somewhere in the UK every 20 seconds.

“Our success lies in the appetite from countries around the world for British cars. Around 80% of the 1.5 million cars we produced last year were exported – a testament to the diverse, high quality of British manufacturing.

“It also highlights the benefits of industry and government working together and we want to continue this partnership through a long-term strategy. This will give businesses the confidence to invest, speed up development on vehicles of the future and keep the UK as a world leader in cars. Our investment of £1bn jointly with industry will help do this, while also delivering jobs and driving growth.”

 

Dec 13 Car graph


UK car exports – to EU and other destinations, 2009-2013 (*2013 is Q1-3 only)

Manufacturing graph 2

 

Since 2009, the variety of cars produced in the UK has been underlined by a marked change in export destinations.

While the European market has struggled with tough economic conditions, overall export volumes have been bolstered by strong growth in demand for UK-built cars in other locations.


Top five non-EU export destinations, 2009-2013 (*2013 is Q1-3 only)

Manufacturing graph 3

China’s share of exports has grown rapidly over recent years, and the country now looks set to become the largest non-EU market for UK-built cars.

Take-up in the United States remained strong last year, and while Russia has seen volumes fall since 2012, it is now firmly established as a key export destination.

Source: SMMT